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Full text of "The life of Pasteur. Translated from the French by Mrs. R.L. Devonshire, with a foreword by Sir William Osler"

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LVr admirable ; ellc montre son 

il faut avoir vccu dans son intimiti pour 
con- l.i bonxi de son cceur. — Dn. Koux. 








Regius Prcfestor of Medicine in tfe University o/Ox/ord 




PRE • 








Pasteur elected to the Academie de Medecine, 3. General Condition of 
Medicine, 4. Surgery before Pasteur, 12. Influence of his Work, 14. 
Letter from Lister, 16. Debates at the Academie de Medecine, 18. 
Science and Religion, 22. National Testimonial, 23. Pasteur a Candi- 
date for the Senate, 26. Speech at the Milan Congress of Sericiculture, 
29. Letter from Tyndall, 30. Discussion with Dr. Bastian, 31. 



Charbon, or Splenic Fever, 35 ; Pasteur studies it, 37. Traditional Medi- 
cine and Pastorian Doctrines, 41. Progress of Surgery, 44. The word 
Microbe invented, 44 ; renewed Attacks against Pasteur, 45. Charbon 
given to Hens — experiment before the Academie de Medecine, 46. 
Pasteur's Note on the Germ Theory, 49. Campaign of Researches on 
Charbon, 53. Critical Examination of a posthumous Note by Claude 
Bernard, 59. Pasteur in the Hospitals, 67 ; Puerperal Fever, 67. 



Chicken Cholera, 75. Attenuation of the Virus, 77. Suggested Researches 
on the bubonic Plague, 79. The Share of Earthworms in the Develop- 
ment of Charbon, 82 ; an Incident at the Academie de Medecine, 87. 
The Vaccine of Charbon, 89 ; public Experiment at Pouilly le Fort on 
the Vaccination of Splenic Fever, 94. First Experiments on Hydro- 
phobia, 96. Death of Sainte-Claire Deville, 104 ; Pasteur's Speech, 
105. Pasteur at the London Medical Congress, 107 ; Virchow and 
Anti-vivisection, 110. Yellow Fever, 116 ; Pasteur at Pauillac, 116. 


B xi 

H-.-. 11 - on 

I I'. I ■ 1 '.i-u-nr 


.1.11.1) the 

I; : JS 

:nl the- I 
i ; I ' . • nr find the 
U . icolturists, 160 l.M. 

udi . 16! i\ i- Plate 

Boose srhen rn, 164; his Speech at tbi I 

1 ndria, ! 

lillier, 168 J. B. D or, 161. Tliird 

n to Pav IT, 164 ; P i, 164. 


blem, 168; preventive Ii ns on Dogs, 

I 174. The 

i I' •■ D . .. k. 177 l'i-' ,11.. • 

at Villi liahmei >ra- 

Ponner 1 dies again- Is at 


Ml SB Xlll 

n "ii M . '; the little Alsatian !'• \, -Joseph 

i for the M 

• I i'.. I at t ! >i--o, 

:i of the Shepherd JupiBe, 
91" 1 !' P annoui 

i ' I 

I ■ > the 1 ! ; the Ku-Mans 

' I on ,,f the 

ng" in ■ R in for the Treatment 

.lth of I 211 ; 

■ rthquake at 
I (then, 214. Peateui b of the 

1 he Trcv i •cur elected 

-17 ; 1 na- 




Influence of Pasteur's Labours, 223 ; his Jubilee, 225 ; Speech, 228. 
Pasteur's Name given to a District in Canada and to a Village in Algeria, 
229. Diphtheria, M. Roux's Studies in Serotherapy, 231 ; Pasteur at 
Lille ; Lecture by M. Roux on Serotherapy, 234 ; repeated at the Buda- 
Pesth Congress, 234. Subscription for the Organization of the Anti- 
diphtheritic Treatment, 234. Pasteur's Disciples, 235. Pasteur's 
niness, 236 ; Visit from Alexander Dumas, 238 ; Visit from former 
Ecole Normale Students, 238. Pasteur refuses a German Decoration, 
239. Conversations with Chappuis, 240. Departure for Villeneuve 
l'Etang, 240 ; last Weeks, 241. Project for a Pasteur Hospital, 242 ; 
Death of Pasteur, 242. 

lUQ6X ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••• ••« ••• ••• ••• — "iO 




Pasteur had glimpses of another world beyond the 
phenomena of fermentation — the world of virus ferments. 
Two centuries earlier, an English physicist, Robert Boyle, 
had said that he who could probe to the bottom the nature of 
ferments and fermentation would probably be more capable 
than any one of explaining certain morbid phenomena. These 
words often recurred tp the mind of Pasteur, who had, con- 
cerning the problem of contagious diseases, those sudden flashes 
of light wherein genius is revealed. But, ever insisting on 
experimental proofs, he constrained his exalted imagination so 
as to follow calmly and patiently the road of experimental 
method. He could not bear the slightest error, or even hasty 
interpretation, in the praises addressed to him. One day, 
during the period of the most ardent polemics, in the midst of 
the struggle on spontaneous generation, a medical man named 
Declat, who declared that Pasteur's experiments were "the 
glory of our century and the salvation of future generations," 
gave a lecture on " The Infinitesimally Small and their Role 
in the World." " After the lecture," relates Dr. Declat him- 
self, " M. Pasteur, whom I only knew by name, came to me, 
and, after the usual compliments, condemned the inductions 
I had drawn from his experiments. ' The arguments,' he said, 
1 by which you support my theories, are most ingenious, but 
not founded on demonstrated facts; analogy is no proof.' " 

Pasteur used to speak very modestly of his work. He said, 
in a speech to some Arbois students, that it was "through 
assiduous work, with no special gift but that of perseverance 
joined to an attraction towards all that is great and good," that 
he had met with success in his researches. He did not add 
that an ardent kindness of heart was ever urging him forward. 
After the services rendered within the last ten years to vinegar 


makers, silkworm cultivators, vine growers, and brewers. 

■ • kle what he . in his mind since 186 

.'Mia diseases. Thus, with the consistent 
logic of his mind, show m as it did the possibility of 

future Robert Boyle's pi he associ;- 

th< '-lings ; not to give those I 

shar.- would be to leave one side of his nature entirely in th» 
shade. He had himself revealed this great factor in his cl. 

when he had said, " It would indeed be a grand thing to 
give the its share in the progress of sci< 1: 

Qg it B gl re in his work. 

d only made him incline the more towards 

the gl ' others. The memory of the children he had lost, 

mournings he had witnessed, caused him to passionately 

• there might be fewer empty places in desolate 

I, and thai this might be due to the application of methods 

rived from his disco- of which he foresaw the immense 

rings on pathology. Beyond this, patriotism being for him 

\-\ h«- thought of the thousands of young men I 

victims of the Tin;. i of murderous 

And, ht of epidemics and the hea- I a 

they ! q the who!.- his compassion extended itself 

to all human suffering. 

H< thai be was not a medical man. fancying that 

it might have facilitated his It was true ti I 

incursion on tl.. in of Medicine, h< looked uj>on as 

a d -a chy minster, some said— who was j mg on I 

of oth( The distrust felt by the pbye 
chemist * of a long ling. In the Trail 
tiqm . published in L865 I y Trorj ,. fi n( j 

1 When a chemist n the chemical condi- 

of th. d of some drug, 

thinki theory of those fi j snd 

J' 1 " If ii ever tl lelusion which chemists will 

p our mn: 

1,8 ' ,,f ":■ by the rches which 

■ r and „_ 

1 by • laming v. their 

• thai 

phr ,ii,l m ,. n a 

'" a8 D< le" ; and : " It 

1873—1877 3 

n >t within the power of physiology to explain the simplest 
j hological affection." Trousseau, on the other hand, was 
endowed with the far-seeing intelligence of a great physician 

>3ntive to the progress of science. He was greatly interested 
in Pasteur's work, and fully appreciated the possibilities opened 
each of his discoveries. 

Pasteur, with the simplicity which contrasted with his extra- 
ordinary powers, supposed that, if he were armed with 
liplomas, he would have greater authority to direct Medicine 
towards the study of the conditions of existence of phenomena, 
and — correlatively to the traditional method of observation, 
which consists in knowing and describing exactly the course 
of the disease — to inspire practitioners with the desire to pre- 
vent and to determine its cause. An unexpected offer went 
some way towards rilling what he considered as a blank. At 
the beginning of the year 1873, a place was vacant in the 
section of the Free Associates of the Academy of Medicine. He 
was asked to stand for it, and hastened to accept. He was 
elected with a majority of only one vote, though he had been 
first on the section's list. The other suffrages were divided 
between Messrs. Le Roy de Mericourt, Brochin, Lheritier, 
and Bertillon. 

Pasteur, as soon as he was elected, promised himself that he 
would be a most punctual academician. It was on a Tuesday 
in April that he attended his first meeting. As he walked 
towards the desk allotted to him, his paralyzed left leg dragging 
a little, no one among his colleagues suspected that this quiet 
and unassuming new member would become the greatest revolu- 
tionary ever known in Medicine. 

One thing added to Pasteur's pleasure in being elected — the 
fact that he would join Claude Bernard. The latter had often 
felt somewhat forlorn in that centre, where some hostility was 
so often to be seen towards all that was outside the Clinic. 
This was the time when the " princes of science," or those who 
were considered as such, were all physicians. Every great 
physician was conscious of being a ruling power. The almost 
daily habit of advising and counselling was added to that idea 
of haughty or benevolent superiority to the rest of the world ; 
and, accustomed to dictate his wishes, the physician frequently 
adopted an authoritative tone and became a sort of personage. 
"Have you noticed," said Claude Bernard to Pasteur with a 
smile under which many feelings were hidden, " that, when a 



doctor enters a room, he always looks as if he was going to say, 
' I have just been saving a fellow-man '? " 

Pasteur knew not those harmless shafts which are a revenge 
for prolonged pomposity. Why need Claude Bernard trouble 
to wonder what So-and-so might think? He had the con- 
sciousness of the work accomplished and the esteem and 
admiration of men whose suffrage more than satisfied him. 
Wlnlst Pasteur was already desirous of spreading in the 
Academie de Medecine the faith which inspired him, Claude 
Bernard remembered the refractory state of mind of those who, 
at the time of his first lectures on experimental physiology 
applied to medicine, affirmed that "physiology can be of no 
in medicine ; it is but a science de luxe which could 
well be dispensed with." He energetically defended this 
science de luxe as the very science of life. In his opening 

mre at the Museum in 1870, he said that "descriptive 
anatomy is to physiology as geography to history; and, as it 
is not sufficient to understand the topography of a country to 
know its history, so is it not enough to know the anatomy of 
an organ to understand its functions." Mery, an old surgeon, 
familiarly compared anatomists to those errand boys in large 
towns, who know the names of the streets and the numbers of 
the houses, but do not know what goes on inside. There are 
indeed in tissues and organs physico-chemical phenomena for 
which anatomy cannot account. 

Claude Bernard was convinced that Medicine would gradually 
emerge from quackery, and this by means of the experimental 
method, like all other science. "No doubt," he said, "we 
shall not live to see the blossoming out of scientific medicine, 
but such is the fate of humanity ; those that sow on the field 
of science are not destined to reap the fruit of their labours." 
And so saying, Claude Bernard continued to sow. 

It is true that here and there flashes of light had preceded 
Pastnir; but. instead of being guided by them, most doctors 
I to advance majestically in the midst of darkness. 
Whenever murderous diseases, scourges of humanity, were in 
question. Ion-: French or Latin words were put forward, such 
as " Epidemic genius," fatum, quid ignotum quid divinum, etc. 
Medical constitution was also a useful word, elastic and applic- 

le to anything. 

When the Yale de Grace physician, Villemin— a modest, 
gentle-voiced man, who, under his quiet exterior, hid a veritable 

1873—1877 5 

thirst for scientific truth — after experimental researches carried 
on from 1865 to 1869, brought the proof that tuberculosis is a 
disease which reproduces itself, and cannot be reproduced but 
by itself ; in a word, specific, inoculable, and contagious, he was 
treated almost as a perturber of medical order. 

Dr. Pidoux, an ideal representative of traditional medicine, 
with his gold-buttoned blue coat and his reputation equally 
great in Paris and at the Eaux-Bonnes, declared that the idea of 
specificity was a fatal thought. Himself a pillar of the doctrine 
of diathesis and of the morbid spontaneity of the organism, he 
exclaimed in some much applauded speeches : " Tuberculosis ! 
but that is the common result of a quantity of divers external 
and internal causes, not the product of a specific agent ever the 
same I ' Was not this disease to be looked upon as " one and 
multiple at the same time, bringing the same final conclusion, 
the necrobiotic and infecting destruction of the plasmatic tissue 
of an organ by a number of roads which the hygienist and 
physician must endeavour to close?" Where would these 
specificity doctrines lead to? "Applied to chronic diseases, 
these doctrines condemn us to the research of specific remedies 
or vaccines, and all progress is arrested. . . . Specificity im- 
mobilizes medicine." These phrases were reproduced by the 
medical press. 

The bacillus of tuberculosis had not been discovered by Vil- 
lemin ; it was only found and isolated much later, in 1882, by 
Dr. Koch ; but Villemin suspected the existence of a virus. In 
order to demonstrate the infectious nature of tuberculosis, he 
experimented on animals, multiplying inoculations ; he took the 
sputum of tuberculous patients, spread it on cotton wool, dried 
it, and then made the cotton wool into a bed for little guinea- 
pigs, who became tuberculous. Pidoux answered these precise 
facts by declaring that Villemin was fascinated by inoculation, 
adding ironically, " Then all we doctors have to do is to set 
out nets to catch the sporules ef tuberculosis, and find a 

That sudden theory of phthisis, falling from the clouds, 
resembled Pasteur's theory of germs floating in air. Was it 
not better, urged Pidoux the heterogenist, to remain in the 
truer and more philosophical doctrine of spontaneous genera- 
tion? ' Let us believe, until the contrary is proved, that we 
are right, we partisans of the common etiology of phthisis, par- 
tisans of the spontaneous tuberculous degeneration of the 

Q 2 


im , in infli: ssible causes, which we 

to cut down the evil in its rot 
\ recepti I milar to that given to Villemin v 

. who. haying meditated on Pasteur's 

x -in. Tit and the part played by that 

1 its action with certain parasites visible with 
a microscope as I by him in the blood of animals which 

of ch urbon di By its action and its rapid multi- 

in the blood, this agent endowed with life probably 

favaine, after the manner of ferments. The blood 

! to thai extent that it speedily brought about the 

th of the infected animal. I'avaine called those filaments 

found in anthrax "bacteria," and added, "They have a place 

in the classification of living beings." But what was that 

animated virus to many doctors? They answered experimental 

proofs by oratorical arguments. 

At the very time when Pasteur took his seat at the Academy 

of Medicine, Davaine was being violently attacked ; his experi- 

ats on septicemia were the cause, or the pretext. But the 

re tone of the discussions prepared Pasteur for future battles. 

Th • iry of germs, the doctrine of virus ferments, all this 

as a complete reversal of acquired notions, a 

her :i had to be suppressed. A well-known surgeon. 

1 >r. < gnao, spol fore the Academic de Medecine of 
what he called "laboratory Burgery, which has destroyed very 
many animals and v human beings." In order to 

rimentalistl of the distance between them and 
!: " Laboratory results should be brou 
out in -\ circumspect, modest and • d manner, as long as 

they have not been i oed by long clinical researches, a 

• on with. tut which there is no real and practical medi 

j. he said, could not be n solved into a 
question "f I ■> ! And. ironically, far from realizing the 

ith "f Ins sarcastic [ v. he exclaimed, " Typhoid fe^ 

bactei ■: ! Hospital miasma, bacterization 1 " 

• j had a word to say. l>r. Piorry, an octogenarian, 
somewhat weighed down with the burd.n of his years and 
' ' tion • leak with his accustomed solemnity, lie 

had found for Villemin'l experiments the simple explanation 
th 'the tuberculous m " ms to be no other than p 1 

which, in OOnsequi '' its sojourn in the organs, has under- 

gone varie.i ind numerous modifications"; and he now im- 

1873—1877 7 

agined that one of the principal causes of fatal accidents due 
to septicaemia after surgical operations was the imperfect ven- 
tilation of hospital wards. It was enough, he thought, that 
putrid odours should not be perceptible, for the rate of mor- 
tality to be decreased. 

It was then affirmed that putrid infection was not an or- 
ganized ferment, that inferior organisms had in themselves 
no toxic action, in fact, that they were the result and not 
the cause of putrid alteration; whereupon Dr. Bouillaud, a 
contemporary of Dr. Piorry, called upon their new colleague 
to give his opinion on the subject. 

It would have been an act of graceful welcome to Pasteur, and 
a fitting homage to the memory of the celebrated Trousseau , who 
had died five years before, in 1867, if any member present had 
then quoted one of the great practitioner's last lectures at the 
Hotel Dieu, wherein he predicted a future for Pasteur's works : 

"The great theory of ferments is therefore now connected 
with an organic function ; every ferment is a germ , the life 
of which is manifested by a special secretion. It may be 
that it is so for morbid viruses; they may be ferments, which, 
deposited within the organism at a given moment and under 
determined circumstances, manifest themselves by divers pro- 
ducts. So will the variolous ferment produce variolic fer- 
mentation, giving birth to thousands of pustules, and likewise 
the virus of glanders , that of sheep pox, etc. . . . 

" Other viruses appear to act locally, but, nevertheless, they 
ultimately modify the whole organism, as do gangrene, ma- 
lignant pustula, contagious erysipelas, etc. May it not be 
supposed, under such circumstances, that the ferment or or- 
ganized matter of those viruses can be carried about by the 
lancet, the atmosphere or the linen bandages? " 

But it occurred to no one in the Academy to quote those 
forgotten words. 

Pasteur, answering Bouillaud, recalled his own researches 
on lactic and butyric fermentations and spoke of his studies 
on beer. He stated that the alteration of beer was due to 
the presence of filiform organisms; if beer becomes altered, 
it is because it contains germs of organized ferments. " The 
correlation is certain, indisputable, between the disease and 
the presence of organisms." He spoke those last words with 
so much emphasis that the stenographer who was taking down 
the extempore speeches underlined them. 


A few months later, on r 17, 1878, he read to the 

Academy a | further developments of his prin- 

ciples. In order thai beer should become altered and become 
sour, putrid, si: acid or lactic, it is necessary that 

foreign organisms should develop within it, and those or- 
ganisms only appear and multiply when those germs are 
air nt in the liquid mass." It is possible to oppose 

th- taction oi those germs; Pasteur drew on the black- 

board the , of an apparatus which only communicated 

with the outer air by means of tubes fulfilling the office of 
the sinuous necks of the glass vessels he had used for his 
experiments on so-called spontaneous generation. He entered 
into every detail, demonstrating that as long as pure yeast 
alone had been sown, the security was absolute. " That which 
has I" i :i put forward on the subject of a possible transforma- 
tion of yeast into bacteria, vibriones, mycoderma aceti and 
vulgar mucors, or vice versa, is mistaken." 

He wrote in a private letter on the subject : " These simple 
and clrar results have cost me many sleepless nights before 
presenting themselves before me in the precise form I have 
now given them.*' 

But his own conviction had not yet pe; d the minds 

of his adversaries, and M. Trecul was still supporting his 
hypothesis of transformations, the so-called proofs of which, 
according to ,r, rested on a basis of confused facts tainted 

with involuntary errors due to imperfect experiments. 

In ober, 1873, at a sitting of the Academy, he pre- 

sented M. Trecul with a few little flagons, in which he had 
sown some pur | of penicillium glaucum, begging him to 

aCl ' ! " u»d to observe them at his Leisnn ring him 

that ,t would be impossible to find a trace of any transformation 
of t int.. y< • lis. 

"When M .! ins finished the little task which I am 

Soliciting of his devotion to the knowledge of truth " con 
t,nu : ' • ,,r - " T rial! give him the elements of a'aimilar 

lerma omi; in other word.. I shall brin^ to 
*■ ]uir] y paw mycoderma run with which 

he r.u, reprodua his former experiments and recognize the 

*hich I have lately announced " 
; fhus: "Th. v will allow me to 

™ " n " ^ PBmw * Tt ™' I that my contra- 

dictors have !„ uharly unlucky in taking the occasion 

1873—1877 9 

of my paper on the diseases of beer to renew this discussion. 
How is it they did not understand that my process for the 
fabrication of inalterable beer could not exist if beer wort in 
contact with air could present all the transformations of which 
they speak? And that work on beer, entirely fouDded as it 
is on the discovery and knowledge of some microscopic beings, 
has it not followed my studies on vinegar, on the mycoderma 
aceti and on the new process of acetification which I have in- 
vented? Has not that work been followed by my studies on 
the causes of wine diseases and the means of preventing them, 
still founded on the discovery and knowledge of non-spontane- 
ous microscopic beings? Have not these last researches been 
followed by the discovery of means to prevent the silkworm 
disease, equally deducted from the study of non-spontaneous 
microscopic beings? 

"Are not all the researches I have pursued for seventeen 
years, at the cost of many efforts, the product of the same 
ideas, the same principles, pushed by incessant toil into con- 
sequences ever new? The best proof that an observer is in 
the right track lies in the uninterrupted fruitfulness of his 

This fruitfulness was evidenced, not only by Pasteur's per- 
sonal labours, but by those he inspired and encouraged. Thus,, 
in that same period, M. Gayon, a former student of the Ecole 
Normale, whom he had chosen as curator, started on some 
researches on the alteration of eggs. He stated that when 
an egg is stale, rotten, this is due to the presence and multi- 
plication of innnitesimally small beings ; the germs of those 
organisms and the organisms themselves come from the ovi- 
duct of the hen and penetrate even into the points where the' 
shell membrane and the albumen are formed. "The result 
is," concluded M. Gayon, "that, during the formation of 
those various elements, the egg may or may not, according 
to circumstances, gather up organisms or germs of organisms, 
and consequently bear within itself, as soon as it is laid, the 
cause of ulterior alterations. It will be seen at the same 
time that the number of eggs susceptible of alteration may 
vary from one hen to another, as well as between the eggs of 
one hen, for the organisms to be observed on the oviduct rise 
to variable heights." 

If the organisms which alter the eggs and cause them to 
rot "were formed," said Pasteur, "by the spontaneous self- 


or ^ -of tl. D the egg into those small 

j nps, all eggs should putrefy equally, whereas they do not." 

• end Of M- liayon's thesis— which had not taken so 
long as Banlin'i I re, only three years— we find I 
following conclusion : " I etion in I ggs is con ith 
th* multiplication of beings which are bac- 

D in contact with air and vibriones when away from 

from that {>oint of view, do not 
il law discovered by M. Pasteur." 

• .r's influence was DO* B] ig beyond the Labora- 

hyaiological Chemistry, ai the small laboratory at the 
trmale was called. 
In the treat he had published in 1862, criticizing th« 
doctrine of spontaneous generation, he had mentioned, among 
or£ai duced by urine in putrefaction, the exist- 

e of a toroJacea in very small-grained chaplets. A physician, 
Tranbe, in 1864, had demonstrated that Pasteur was right 
in thinking that aininoniacal fermentation was due to this 
. who- | -Tties were afterwards studied with in- 

j M. Van Tieghem, a former student of the Ecole 
. who had inspired Pasteur with a deep affection. 
:r. in his turn, completed his own observations and 
assured himself thai this little organized ferment was to be 
found in every case of ammoniacal urine. Finally, after prov- 
ing thai boracic acid impeded the development of that am- 
moniacal ferment, he raj I to M G-nyon, the cel< brated 
-• of boracic acid for washing out the bladder; 
M. • advice into practice with success, and attri- 
credil of it to Pasteur. 
In a letter writi I of 1673, Pasteur wrote :" How 
1 n I Bad enough health and sufficient knowledge to throw 
I soul into the experimental study of one of 
■ I' I nsid. red that his studies on 
f, ' r: would lead him in that direction; he thought 
i it should be made evident \));>a every serious altersv- 
lue to the micro-organisms which find in 
f l»qu am favourable to their develop] when 
lid \» that— in eontri to the I as by 
those air is are looked upon ns spontaneous, in- 
liquids, and depending on their .and 
,!ir cause of 1 ss is not interiof but 
lid indei d be d« loctrine of men 

1873—1877 1 1 

like Pidoux, who k propos of diseases, said: "Disease is in 
us, of us, by us," and who, a. propos of small-pox, even said 
that he was not certain that it could only proceed from inocula- 
tion and contagion. 

Though the majority of physicians and surgeons considered 
that it was waste of time to listen to " a mere chemist," there 
was a small group of young men, undergraduates, who, in their 
thirst for knowledge, assembled at the Academic de Medecine 
every Tuesday, hoping that Pasteur might bring out one of 
his communications concerning a scientific method '' which 
resolves each difficulty by an easily interpreted experiment, 
delightful to the mind, and at the 6ame time so decisive that 
it is as satisfying as a geometrical demonstration, and gives an 
impression of security." 

Those words were written by one of those who came to the 
Academie sittings, feeling that they were on the eve of some 
great revelations. He was a clinical assistant of Dr. Behier's, 
and, busy as he was with medical analysis, he was going over 
Pasteur's experiments on fermentations for his own edifica- 
tion. He was delighted with the sureness of the Pastorian 
methods, and was impatient to continue the struggle now begun. 
Enthusiasm was evinced in his brilliant eyes, in the timbre 
of his voice, clear, incisive, slightly imperious perhaps, and in 
his implacable desire for logic. Of solitary habits, with no 
ambition for distinction or degrees, he worked unceasingly for 
sheer love of science. The greatest desire of that young man 
of twenty-one, quite unknown to Pasteur, was to be one day 
admitted, in the very humblest rank, to the Ecole Xormale 
laboratory. His name was Roux. 

Was not that medical student, that disciple lost in the crowd, 
an image of the new generation hungering for new ideas, more 
convinced than the preceding one had been of the necessity 
of proofs? Struck by the unstable basis of medical theories, 
those young men divined that the secret of progress in hospitals 
was to be found in the laboratories. Medicine and surgery in 
those days were such a contrast to what they are now that it 
seems as if centuries divided them. No doubt one day some 
professor, some medical historian, will give us a full account 
of that vast and immense progress. But, whilst awaiting a 
fully competent work of that kind, it is possible, even in a book 
such as this (which is, from many causes, but a hasty epitome 
of many very different things spread over a very simple 

If THE UPE OF P ' "It 

• to a reader unfamiliar with such studies a 

most interesting < ra in the history 

of civilization, nfT«-ctinK the preservation of innumerable human 

" A pin-prick is a door open to Death," said the surgeon 
Velpean. That open door widened before the smallest opera- 
; the lancing of an abscess or a whitlow sometimes had such 
I rioni consequences that surgeons hesitated before the slight 

the bistoury. It was much worse when a great surgical 
rrention was necessary, though, through the irony of things, 
the immediate success of the most difficult operations was now 
1 by the progress of skill and the precious discovery 
:. Tli-' patient, his will and consciousness sus- 
pended, awoke from the most terrible operation as from a 
dream. Hut at that very moment when the surgeon's art was 
boldened by being able to disregard pain, it was arrested, 
discon . and terrified by the fatal failures which super- 

vened ftfter almost every operation. The words pya?mia. 
prene, erysipelas, septicaemia, purulent infection, were 
bywords in those days. 

In the face of those terrible consequences, it had been 
thought better, about forty years ago, to discourage and even 
to prohibit a certain operation, then recently invented and prac- 
i\ in od and America, ov y, "even," said 

Velj " if the reported eures he true." In order to express 

• rror inspired by ovariotomy, a physician went so far as 
to say thai it should be " olsssed among the attributes of the 

As • i supposed that the infected air of the hospitals 
iki. the cause of the invariably fatal results of that opera- 

IS Publique 1 hired an isolated house in the 
le Meudon, near Paris, a salubrious spot. In 1863, 

• • women in lUCCession wei thai house; the neigh- 
bouring inhabitants watched those ten petit nts entering the 
he I i short time afterwards their ten coffins being taken 

In theil terrified ignorance they called that house the 
H s of 4 Irin 
Surg> "lis were asking themselves whether they did not 

with th. in, unco' -ily scattering virus and 

Bui :sons. 

.'ion cf the charitable work* 

• v; I r»ii8.J 

1873—1877 13 

Since the beginning of the nineteenth century, surgery had 
positively retrograded ; the mortality after operations was in- 
finitely less in the preceding centuries, because antisepsis was 
practised unknowingly, though cauterizations by fire, boiling 
liquids and disinfecting substances. In a popular handbook 
published in 1749, and entitled Medicine and Surgery for the 
Poor, we read that wounds should be kept from the contact 
of air ; it was also recommended not to touch the wound with 
fingers or instruments. ' It is very salutary, when uncover- 
ing the wound in order to dress it, to begin by applying over 
its whole surface a piece of cloth dipped into hot wine or 
brandy." Good results had been obtained by the great sur- 
geon Larrey, under the first Empire, by hot oil, hot brandy, 
and unfrequent dressings. But, under the influence of 
Broussais, the theory of inflammation caused a retrogression 
in surgery. Then came forth basins for making poultices, 
packets of charpie (usually made of old hospital sheets merely 
washed), and rows of pots of ointment. It is true that, during 
the second half of the last century, a few attempts were made 
to renew the use of alcoholized water for dressings. In 1868, 
at the time when the mortality after amputation in hospitals 
was over sixty per cent., Surgeon L£on Le Fort banished 
sponges, exacted from his students scrupulous cleanliness and 
constant washing of hands and instruments before every 
operation, and employed alcoholized water for dressings. But 
though he obtained such satisfactory results as to lower, in 
his wards at the Hopital Cochin, the average of mortality 
after amputations to twenty-four per cent., his colleagues 
were very far from suspecting that the first secret for prevent- 
ing fatal results after operations consisted in a reform of 
the dressings. 

Those who visited an ambulance ward during the war of 
1870, especially those who were medical students, have pre- 
served such a recollection of the sight that they do not, even 
now, care to speak about it. It was perpetual agony, jfche 
wounds of all the patients were suppurating, a horrible fetor 
pervaded the place, and infectious septicaemia was everywhere. 
" Pus seemed to germinate everywhere," said a student of that 
time (M. Landouzy, who became a professor at the Faculty 
of Medicine), "as if it had been sown by the surgeon." M. 
Landouzy also recalled the words of M. Denonvilliers, a sur- 
geon of the Charity Hospital, whom he calls "a splendid 

|| CEUB 

C p virtuoso, and ad.. Q the art of operat- 

ll : * Wl. 
think t- about it, for too often, when 

i. we sign the patient's death-war- 
ra: • . , who must have been profoundly 

: in spite of his youthf gy, M. Verneuil, ai- 

re no longer am | 96 indications, any 
tional provisions; nothing was successful, neither abstention, 

d or radical mutilati iriy or p 

poi n of the bullets, dressing! rare or frequent, 

• dry or moist, with or without drainage; 

tried everything in vain I " During the siege of Paris, in 

eand Hotel, which had been turned u . ambulance., 

in, in despair at the sight of the death of almost every 

ho had been operated on, declared that he who should 

: qui r purulent infection would deserve a golden statue. 

]t v y at the end of the war that it occurred to Alphonse 

li rin to bis U ■ irritation was so often oonioundi d 

th another Burgeon, his namesake and opponent, Jules 

Guerin)— thai "the cause of purulent infection may perhaps 

to the germs or ferments discovered by Pasteur to 

it in the air." Alphonse Guerin saw, in malarial fe\ 

of putrefied vegetable matter, and, in purulent 
infection, animal emanations, septic, and capable of causing 

l thought more firmly than ever," he declan 'that 

the miasms emanating from the pus of the woundi 1 were 

the ri .1 cauat of tins frightful disease, to winch I had the 

so: ■ ing the wounded succumb — whetl .r wounds 

1 with charpie and cerate or with alcoholized and 

. either renewed several times a day or impreg- 

; bandagei which remained applied to the wounds. 

In king some means of pre! these 

I bethought m the miasms, whose 

! tted, because 1 could not otherwise explain 

I purulent infection -and which were only 

:i to me by their is inf... might well be 

living of the kind which ir had seen in 

ad, from thai moment, the history of mias- 
mal ing \< 1:". " I said, "miasms 

protect 1 d from their fatal 

' < i> ie air, as PssteUI did. 1 then con- 

1873— 1877 15 

ceived the idea of cotton-wool dressings, and I bad the satis- 
faction of seeing my anticipations realized." 

After arresting the bleeding, ligaturing the blood vessels 
and carefully washing the wound with carbolic solution or 
camphorated alcohol, Alphonse Guerin applied thin layers of 
cotton wool, over which he placed thicker masses of the same, 
binding the whole with strong bandages of new linen. This 
dressing looked like a voluminous parcel and did not require 
to be removed for about twenty days. This was done at 
the St. Louis Hospital to the wounded of the Commune from 
March till June, 1871. Other surgeons learnt with amaze- 
ment that, out of thirty-four patients treated in that way, 
nineteen had survived operation. Dr. Keclus, who could not 
bring himself to believe it, said: "We had grown to look 
upon purulent infection as upon an inevitable and necessary 
disease, an almost Divinely instituted consequence of any 
important operation." 

There is a much greater danger than that of atmospheric 
germs, that of the contagium germ, of which the surgeon's 
hands; sponges and tools are the receptacle, if minute and 
infinite precautions are not taken against it. Such precau- 
tions were not even thought of in those days; charpie, odious 
charpie, was left lying about on hospital and ambulance 
tables, in contact with dirty vessels. It had, therefore, been 
sufficient to institute careful washing of the wounds, and es- 
pecially to reduce the frequency of dressings, and so diminish 
the chances of infection to obtain — thanks to a reform inspired 
by Pasteur's labours — this precious and unexpected remedy 
to fatalities subsequent to operations. In 1873, Alphonse 
Guerin, now a surgeon at the Hotel Dieu, submitted to Pasteui 
all the facts which had taken place at the hospital St. Louis 
where surgery was more "active," he said, than at the 
Hotel Dieu ; he asked him to come and see his cotton-wool 
dressings, and Pasteur gladly hastened to accept the invita- 
tion. It was with much pleasure that Pasteur entered upon 
this new period of visits to hospitals and practical discussion? 
with his colleagues of the Academie de Medecine. His joy 
at the thought that he had been the means of awakening in 
other minds ideas likely to lead to the good of humanity was 
increased by the following letter from Lister, dated from 
Edinburgh, February 13, 1874, which is here reproduced in 
the original — 


" My <!• If Sir — allow me to our acceptance of a pam- 

which I :. 1 by the Same post, containing an account 

some u tiona into the subject which you have done 

bo much to elucidate, the germ th< i ry of f< rmentatiTe changes. 

. ou may read with some in' I have written on the organism which you were the first 
be in your Mfanoin sur la fermentation appelie 

J do Dot know whether the record* of British Surgery 
• your eye. If so. you will have seen from time to 
of the antiseptic . of tr it, which I 

have bees labouring for the last nine years to bring to per- 

' Allow me to take this opportunity to tender you my most 

cordial thinks for having, by your brilliant researches, de- 

1 to me the truth of the germ theory of putrefaction, 

and thus furnished me with the principle upon which alone 

c system can be carried out. Should you at any 

time visit Edinburgh, it would, I believe, give you sincere 

ion to see at our hospital how largely mankind is being 

d by your labours. 

' ] oe< d hardly add that it would afford me the highest 

• :on to 6how you how greatly surgery is indebted to 


rpvr the freedom with which a common love of science 
ins] me, ai 

" Believe me, with profound respect. 

" Yours very sinoi rely, 

" JosErn Lister." 

In T,i-t« r's wards, the instrument^ s and o< 

: for dressings were t':rst of all purified in a strong 
coin M* ii of carbolic acid. Th- rations were tal 

ads of the surgeon and of his assistant-. 1 taring the 

h operation, a vaporizer of carbolic solution 

ind the wound an antiseptic atmosphere; after it 

p, the wound was again washed with the carbolic 

ution. used for dressing: a sort 

similar to tarlatan and impn gnated with a mixture 

ifliu and carbolic, maintained an antiseptic atmo- 

:d the wound. Such was -in its main lines — 

List. r"s method. 

1873—1877 17 

A medical student, M. Just Lucas-Championniere — who 
later on became an exponent in France of this method, and 
who described it in a valuable treatise published in 1876 — had 
already in 1869, after a journey to Glasgow, stated in the 
Journal de medecine et de chirurgie pratique what were those 
first principles of defence against gangrene — " extreme and 
minute care in the dressing of wounds." But his isolated voice 
was not heard ; neither was any notice taken of a celebrated lec- 
ture given by Lister at the beginning of 1870 on the penetrating 
of germs into a purulent centre and on the utility of antisepsis 
applied to clinical practice. A few months before the war, 
Tyndall, the great English physicist, alluded to this lecture in 
an article entitled " Dusts and Diseases," which was published 
by the Revue des cours scientifiques . But the heads of the pro- 
fession in France had at that time absolute confidence in them- 
selves, and nobody took any interest in the rumour of success 
attained by the antiseptic method. Yet, between 1867 and 
1869, thirty-four of Lister's patients out of forty had survived 
after amputation. It is impossible on reading of this not to feel 
an immense sadness at the thought of the hundreds and 
thousands of young men who perished in ambulances and hospi- 
tals during the fatal year, and who might have been saved by 
Lister's method. In his own country, Lister had also been 
violently criticized. " People turned into ridicule Lister's 
minute precautions in the dressing of wounds," writes a com- 
petent judge, Dr. Auguste Eeaudin, a professor at the Geneva 
Faculty of Medicine, " and those who lost nearly all their 
patients by poulticing them had nothing but sarcasms for the 
man who was so infinitely superior to them." Lister, with 
his calm courage and smiling kindliness, let people talk, and 
endeavoured year by year to perfect his method, testing it 
constantly and improving it in detail. No one, however 
sceptical, whom he invited to look at his results, could preserve 
his scepticism in the face of such marked success. 

Some of his opponents thought to attack him on another 
point by denying him the priority of the use of carbolic acid. 
Lister never claimed that priority, but his enemies took 
pleasure in recalling that Jules Lemaire, in 1860, had proposed 
the use of weak carbolic solution for the treatment of open 
wounds, and that the same had been prescribed by Dr. Declat 
in 1861, and also by Maisonneuve, Demarquay and others. 
The fact that should have been proclaimed was that Lister 


' 1 l BUI I method which was in itself an immense 
and beneficial | -3; and Lister took pleasure in declaring 

that he owed to Pasteur the principle! which had guided him. 

time when or received the 1 I .bove que 

which ! him deep gratification, people in France were so 

from all tli. rind antisepsis and asepsis, that, wl 

he advised >ns at the Academic de M- lecine to put 

their instruments through a flame before using them, they did 
not understand what he meant, and he had to explain — 

" 1 mean that surgical instruments should merely be put 

through a flam.', not really heated, and for this reason : if a 

sound wi with a microscope, it would be seen that 

surface presents grooves where dusts are harboured, which 

not be completely removed even by the most careful 

cleansing. Fire entirely destroys those organic dusts ; in my 

laboratory, where 1 am surrounded by dust of all kinds, I 

ret make use of an instrument without previously putting 

it through a flame." 

ir was ever ready to help others, giving them willing 
advice or information. In November, L874, when visiting 
the Hotel Dieu with Messrs. L;. nd Gosselin, he had 

occasion to notice that a certain cotton-wool dressing had been 
very badly done by a student in one of Gruerin's wards, 
wound on the dirty hand of a labouring man had been 
with cotton wool without having been washed in 
any way. When the bandaging was removed in the pi 
of Guerin, the pus exhaled a repugnant odour, and was found 
warm with vihriones. Pasteur in a sitting of the Academie 
des Bcien red into details as to the precautions which 

. to get rid of the germs originally present on 
the surface of the wound or of the cotton wool ; he declai 
that the layers of cotton wool should be heated to a very high 
•■'lire. Be also BUggested the following experiment: 
" In order to demonstrate the evil influence oi ferment 

in the suppuration of wounds. 1 would make 

identical wounds on the two symmetrical limbs of an 

animal under chloroform; on one of those wounds I would 

• m-wool dressing with every possible precaution; 

on I D the contrary. I would cultivate, so to speak. 

mi from ■ strange sore, and offering, 

more or l<'ss, a s- ptio character. 

" Finally, I should like to cut open a wound on an animal 

1873—1877 19 

under chloroform in a very carefully selected part of the body 
— for the experiment would be a very delicate one — and in 
absolutely pure air, that is, air absolutely devoid of any kind 
of germs, afterwards maintaining a pure atmosphere around 
the wound, and having recourse to no dressing whatever. I 
am inclined to think that perfect healing would ensue under 
such conditions, for there would be nothing to hinder the work 
of repair and reorganization which must be accomplished on 
the surface of a wound if it is to heal." 

He explained in that way the advantage accruing to 
hygiene, in hospitals and elsewhere, from infinite precautions 
of cleanliness and the destroying of infectious germs. Himself 
a great investigator of new ideas, he intended to compel his 
colleagues at the Academie de Medecine to include the patho- 
genic share of the infinitesimally small among matters de- 
manding the attention of medicine and surgery. The struggle 
was a long, unceasing and painful one. In February, 1875, 
his presence gave rise to a discussion on ferments, which 
lasted until the end of March. In the course of this discus- 
sion he recalled the experiments he had made fifteen years 
before, describing how — in a liquid composed of mineral 
elements, apart from the contact of atmospheric air and 
previously raised to ebullition — vibriones could be sown and 
subsequently seen to flourish and multiply, offering the sight 
of those two important phenomena : life without air, and 

"They are far behind us now," he said^ "they are now 
relegated to the rank of chimeras, those theories of fermenta- 
tion imagined by Berzelius, Mitscherlich , and Liebig, and re- 
edited with an accompaniment of new hypotheses by Messrs. 
Pouchet, Fremy, Trecul, and Bechamp. Who would now 
dare to affirm that fermentations are contact phenomena, 
phenomena of motion, communicated by an altering albuminoid 
matter, or phenomena produced by semi-organized materia, 
transforming themselves into this or into that? All those 
creations of fancy fall to pieces before this simple and decisive 

Pasteur ended up his speech by an unexpected attack on 
the pompous etiquette of the Academy's usual proceedings, 
urging his colleagues to remain within the bounds of a 
Scientific discussion instead of making flowery speeches. He 
was much applauded, and his exhortation taker in good part. 



His col lea also probably sympathized with his irritation 
in hearing a member of the My. M. Poggiale, formerly 

Apothecary in chief to the Yal d- Grace, give a som- 
sceptical diss. n on such a subject as spontaneous genera- 

tion, saying disdainfully — 

' M. Pasteur has told us that he had looked for spo us 

generation for twenty yean without finding it; he will long 
continue to look for it. and, in spite of his courage, perse- 
verance and sagacity, I doubt whether he ever will find 
It is almost an o ible question. However those who, like 

me, have no fixed opinion on the question of spontaneous 

eration reserve the right of verifying, of sifting and of 
disputing new facts, as they appear, one by one and wherever 
they are produced." 

'What!' cried Pasteur, wrathful whenever those great 
questions were thoughtlessly tackled, " what 1 I have been for 
twenty years engaged in one subject and I am not to have an 
opinion ! and the right of verifying, sifting, and disputing the 
facts is to belong to him who does nothing to become i 
lightened but merely to read our works more or less attentively. 
his feet on his study fender 11! J 

" You have no opinion on spontaneous generation, my deal 
colleague; I can well believe that, while regretting it. I am 
not speaking, of course, of those senti: ! opinions that 

rybody has, more or less, in questions of this nature, for 
in this assembly we do not go in for sentiment. You say that, 
in the present state of science, it is wiser to have no opinion : 

II, I have an opinion, not a sentimental one, but a rational 
one. having acquired a right to it by twenty years of assiduous 
labour, ami it would be wise in every impartial mind to share 
it. My opinion — nay. more, my conviction — is that, in the 
present state of sci) M you rightly say, spontam ous gene- 

ration is a chimera; and it would be impossible for you to 
contradict me, for m] riments all stand forth to prove 

that spontaneous generation is a chimera. What is then 

II judgment on my experiments? Have I not a hundred 

ic matter in contact with pure air in the 

be.-' Litions for it to produce life spontaneously? Have 

1 not praol D those organic materia which are most 

curable, according to all its. to the genesis of spon- 

sity, such as blood, urine, and grape juice? How is it 

• you do not see the essential ditTerence between my op- 

1873—1877 21 

ponents and myself? Not only have I contradicted, proof in 
hand, every one of their assertions, while they have never dared 
to seriously contradict one of mine, but, for them, every cause 
of error benefits their opinion. For me, affirming as I do 
that there are no spontaneous fermentations, I am bound 
to eliminate every cause of error, every perturbing influence, 
I can maintain my results only by means of most irreproach- 
able experiments; their opinions, on the contrary, profit by 
every insufficient experiment and that is where they find their 

Pasteur having been abruptly addressed by a colleague, 
who remarked that there were yet many unexplained facts in 
connection with fermentation, he answered by thus apostro- 
phizing his adversaries — 

' What is then your idea of the progress of Science? 
Science advances one step, then another, and then draws back 
and meditates before taking a third. Does the impossibility 
of taking that last step suppress the success acquired by the 
two others ? Would you say to an infant who hesitated before 
a third step, having ventured on two previous ones : ' Thy 
former efforts are of no avail ; never shalt thou walk ' ? 

" You wish to upset what you call my theory, apparently in 
order to defend another ; allow me to tell you by what signs these 
theories are recognized : the characteristic of erroneous theories 
is the impossibility of ever foreseeing new facts ; whenever such 
a fact is discovered, those theories have to be grafted with 
further hypotheses in order to account for them. True 
theories, on the contrary, are the expression of actual facts 
and are characterized by being able to predict new facts, 
a natural consequence of those already known. In a word, 
the characteristic of a true theory is its fruitfulness." 

"Science," said he again at the following sitting of the 
Academy, "should not concern itself in any way with the 
philosophical consequences of its discoveries. If through the 
development of my experimental studies I come to demonstrate 
that matter can organize itself of its own accord into a cell 
or into a living being, I would come here to proclaim it with 
the legitimate pride of an inventor conscious of having made 
a great discovery, and I would add, if provoked to do so, ' All 
the worse for those whose doctrines or systems do not fit in 
with the truth of the natural facts.' 

' It was with similar pride that I defied my opponents to 

b 2 


contradict me when I said, ' In the present state of science 
th' Hne of spontaneous generation is a chimera.' And 

I add, with similar independence, ' All the worse for those 
whose philosophical or political ideas are hindered by my 

' This is not to be taken to mean that, in my beliefs and in 
the conduct of my life, I only take account of acquired science : 
if I would, I could not do so, for I should then have to strip 
myself of a part of myself. There are two men in each one 
of us : the scientist, ho who starts with a clear field and 
desires to rise to the knowledge of Nature through observa- 
tion, experimentation and reasoning, and the man of senti- 
ment, the man of belief, the man who mourns his dead 
children, and who cannot, alas, prove that he will see th 
again, but who believes that he will, and lives in that hope, 
the man who will not die like a vibrio, but who feels that 
the force that is within him cannot die. The two domains are 
distinct , and woe to him who tries to let them tresspass on each 
other in the so imperfect state of human knowledge." 

And that separation, as he understood it, caused in him 
none of those conflicts which often determine a crisis in a 
human soul. As a scientist, he claimed absolute liberty of 
i • h ; he consid red, with Claude Bernard and Littre, that 
it was a mistaken waste of time to endeavour to penetrate 
primary can- ' we can only note correlations," he said. 

it, with the spiritual sentiment which caused him to claim 
for the inner moral life the same liberty as for scientific re- 

urch, he could not underst rtain givers i na- 

tions who affirm that matter lias org I il .', and who, 

ering as perfectly simple t he spectacle of the Universe 
of which Earth is but an infinitesimal part, are in no v 
moved by the Infinite Power who created the worlds. With 
1 whole heart he proclaimed the immortality of the soul. 

mode of looking upon human life, in spite of sorrows, 

of struggles, of heaw hardens, had in it ■ Btrong element of 

ood m: 'No effort is wasted/ 1 he said, giving thus a 

wriie lesson of philosophy to those inferior minds who 

only see imm. diate results in the work they undertake and are 

rat disappointment. In his ct for 

tie imenon of Con. e, by which almost all 

men, enveloped as they are in the mystery of the Universe, 
have the prescience of an Ideal, of a God, he considered that 

1873—1877 23 

" the greatness of human actions can be measured by the inspi- 
rations which give them birth." He was convinced that there 
are no vain prayers. If all is simple to the simple, all is 
great to the great ; it was through ' ' the Divine regions of 
Knowledge and of Light " that he had visions of those who are 
no more. 

It was very seldom that he spoke of such things, though 
he was sometimes induced to do so in the course of a dis- 
cussion so as to manifest his repugnance for vainglorious 
negations and barren irony ; sometimes too he would enter into 
such feelings when speaking to an assembly of young men. 

Those discussions at the Academy of Medicine had the 
advantage of inciting medical men to the research of the 
infinitesimally small, described by the Annual Secretary 
Roger as ' those subtle artisans of many disorders in the 
living economy." 

M. Roger, at the end of a brief account of his colleague's 
work, wrote, " To the signal services rendered by M. Pasteur 
to science and to our country, it was but fair that a signal re- 
compense should be given : the National Assembly has under- 
taken that care." 

That recompense, voted a few months previously, was the 
third national recompense accorded to French scientists since 
the beginning of the century. In 1837, Arago, before the 
Chamber of Deputies, and Gay Lussac, before the Chamber 
of Peers, had otained a glorious recognition of the services 
rendered by Daguerre and Niepce. In 1845 another national 
recompense was accorded, to M. Vicat, the engineer. In 1874, 
Paul Bert, a member of the National Assembly, gladly re- 
porting on the projected law tending to offer a national 
recompense to Pasteur, wrote quoting those precedents : 

" Such an assurance of gratitude, given by a nation to men 
who have made it richer and more illustrious, honours it at 
least as much as it does them. ..." Paul Bert continued 
by enumerating Pasteur's discoveries, and spoke of the millions 
Pasteur had assured to France, " without retaining the least 
share of them for himself." In sericiculture alone, the losses 
in twenty years, before Pasteur's interference, rose to 1,500 
millions of francs. 

" M. Pasteur's discoveries, gentlemen," concluded Paul 
Bert, " after throwing a new light on the obscure question of 
fermentations and of the mode of appearance of microscopic 

84 THE I.I it: OF PA8TEUB 

lationized certain branches of industry, of 

ricultui thology. One is struck with admiration 

v. hen seeing that so many, and such di\ nits, proceed— 

through an unbroken chain of facts, nothing being left to 
hypothesil — from theoretical studies on the manner in whi 

•aric acid deviates polarized light. Never was the famous 
Baying. '( I nius consists in ■ufficient patience,' more amply 
The Government now proposes that you should 
honour this admirable combination of theoretical and practical 
study by a national use; your Commission unani- 

nio approves of this proposition. 

"The bu 1 recompense consists in a life annuity of 

12,000 francs, which is the approximate amount of the salary 
of the Sorbonne professorship, which M. Pasteur's ill health 
has compelled him to give up. It is indeed small when corn- 
ed with the value of the services rendered, and your 
Commission much regrets that the state of our finances d 
not allow us to increase that amount. But the Commission 
with its learned chairman (M. Mares) 'that the eco- 
nomic nnd hygienic results of M. Pasteur's discoveries will 
tly become so considerable that the French nation will 
desire to increase later on its testimony of gratitude towards 
him and towards Science, of which he is one of the most 
glorious representatives.' " 

II :'f the amount of the annuity i t to .steur's 

widow. The Bill was passed by 582 \ A b again- 

" Where is the governmi ut which has secured 6uch a 
majority?" wrote ' ir's old friend Chappuis, now 1 

of the Grenoble Academy. The value of the recompei 
was inly much enhanced by the fact that the Assembly. 

divided upon BO many subjects, had been almost unanimous 
in its feeling of gratitude towards him who had laboured so 
bard for Science, for the country and for Humanity. 

"Bravo, my & ■' ! I ur : 1 am glad for you and for 

myself, and proud for us all. Your d< friend. Saints 

" You og to be b happy scientist." wrote M. Duclaux, 

" for you can already see, and you will ass more and more, the 
fcrium] trines and of your disc 

Those who imagined that this national recompense was the 

^e of I perhaps even the last chapter of the 

book of his life, gave him, in their well-meaning ignorance, 

1873—1877 25 

some advice which highly irritated him : they advised him to 
rest. It is true that his cerebral haemorrhage had left him 
with a certain degree of lameness and a slight stillness of the 
left hand, those external signs reminding him only too well 
of the threatening possibility of another stroke ; but his mighty 
soul was more than ever powerful to master his infirm body. 
It was therefore evident that Nisard, usually very subtle in his 
insight into character, did not thoroughly understand Pasteur 
when he wrote to him, "Now, dear friend, you must give up 
your energies to living for your family, for all those who love 
you, and a little too for yourself." 

In spite of his deep, even passionate tenderness for his 
family, Pasteur had other desires than to limit his life to such 
a narrow circle. Every man who knows he has a mission to 
fulfil feels that there are rays of a light purer and more 
exalted than that proceeding from the hearth. As to the 
suggestion that Pasteur should take care of his own health, 
it was as useless as it would be to advise certain men to take 
care of that of others. 

Dr. Andral had vainly said and written that he should for- 
bid Pasteur any assiduous labour. Pasteur considered that 
not to work was to lose the object of living at all. If, however, 
a certain equilibrium was established between the anxious 
solicitude of friends, the prohibitions of medical advisers and 
the great amount of work which Pasteur insisted on doing, it 
was owing to her who with a discreet activity watched in 
silence to see that nothing outside his work should complicate 
Pasteur's life, herself his most precious collaborator, the con- 
fidante of every experiment. 

Everything was subordinate to the laboratory ; Pasteur 
never accepted an invitation to those large social gatherings 
which are a tax laid by those who have nothing to do on the 
time of those who are busy, especially if they be celebrated. 
Pasteur's name, known throughout the world, was never men- 
tioned in fashionable journals; he did not even go to theatres. 
In the evening, after dinner, he usually perambulated the 
hall and corridor of his rooms at the Ecole Normale, cogitating 
over various details of his work. At ten o'clock, he went to 
bed, and at eight the next morning, whether he had had a 
good night or a bad one, he resumed his work in the laboratory. 

That regular life, preserving its even tenor through so many 
polemics and discussions, was momentarily perturbed by 


politics in January, 1876. Pasteur, who, in his extra- 
ordinary, almost disconcerting modesty, believed that a medi- 
cal diploma would have facilitated his scientific revolution, 

kgined — after the pressing overtures made to him by some 
of his proud compatriots — that he would be able to serve more 
usefully ' use of higher education if he were to obtain a 

6<at a! the Sena - 

He addressed from Paris a letter to the senatorial electors 
of the department of Jura. " I am not a political man," he 
said, " 1 am bound to no party ; not having studied politics I 
am ignorant of many things, but I do know this, that I love 
i my country and have served her with all my strength." Like 
many good citizens, he thought that a renewal of the national 
grandeur and prosperity might be sought in a serious experi- 
mental trial of the Republic. If honoured with the suffrages 
of his countrymen, he would " represent in the Senate, Science 
in all its purity, dignity and independence." Two Jura 
newspapers, of different opinions, agreed in regretting that 
] istenr should leave "the peaceful altitudes of science," 
and come down into the Jura to solicit the electors' suffrages. 

In his answers to such articles, letters dictated to his son — 
who acted as his secretary during that electoral campaign and 
accompanied him to Lons-le-Saulnier, where they spent a 
week, published addresses, posters, etc. — Pasteur invoked the 
following motto, " ience et Patrie." Why had France been 
victorious in 1792? ' Because Science had given to our 
fathers the material means of fighting." And he recalled the 
names of Monge, of Carnot, of Fourcroy, of Guy ton de Mor- 
veau, of Berthollet, that concourse of men of science, thanks 
to whom it had been possible — during that grandiose epoch — 
to hasten the working of steel and the preparation of leather 
for soldiers' boots, and to find means of extracting saltpetre 
for gunpowder from plaster rubbish, of making use of recon- 
tnng balloons and of per!" telegraphy. 

The senatorial electors numb red 650. Jules Gr/vy came 
to Lons-le-Saulnier to support the candidature of MM. Tami- 
aier and Thurel. In a meeting which * | laofi the day before 
the election he said, " You will give them your suffrage to- 
morrow, and in so doin;; yon will have deserved well of I 
Re] tblic *nd of Fran He mentioned, incidentally, that 

M. Pasteur's character and scientific work entitle him to 
oniv< I and esteem ; but b not has its natural place 

1873—1877 27 

at the Institute," he added, insisting on the Senate's political 
attributes. Grevy's intervention in favour of his two candi- 
dates was decisive. M. Tamisier obtained 446 votes, M. 
Thurel 445, General Picard 113, M. Besson, a monarchist, 
153, Pasteur 62 only. 

He had received on that very morning a letter from his 
daughter, wishing him a failure — a bright, girlish letter, frankly 
expressing the opinion that her father could be most useful to 
his country by confining himself to laboratory work, and that 
politics would necessarily hinder such work. 

It was easy to be absolutely frank with Pasteur, who 
willingly accepted every truthful statement. No man was 
ever more beloved, more admired and less flattered in his own 
home than he was. 

" What a wise judge you are, my dearest girl ! " answered 
Pasteur the same evening; "you are perfectly right. But I 
am not sorry to have seen all this, and that your brother should 
have seen it; all knowledge is useful." 

That little incursion into the domain of politics was ren- 
dered insignificant in Pasteur's life by the fact that his long- 
desired object was almost reached. Three months later, at the 
distribution of prizes of the Concours General, the Minister of 
Public Instruction pronounced a speech, of which Pasteur pre- 
served the text, underlining with his own hand the following 
passages : " Soon, I hope, we shall see the Schools of Medicine 
and of Pharmacy reconstructed ; the College de France pro- 
vided with new laboratories ; the Faculty of Medicine trans- 
ferred and enlarged, and the ancient Sorbonne itself restored 
and extended." 

And while the Minister spoke of " those higher studies of 
Philosophy, of History, of disinterested Science which are the 
glory of a nation and an honour to the human mind . . . which 
must retain the first rank to shed their serene light over inferior 
studies, and to remind men of the true goal and the true 
grandeur of human intelligence. ..." Pasteur could say to 
himself that the great cause which he had pleaded since he 
was made Dean of Faculty at Lille in 1854, which he had sup- 
ported in 1868 and again on the morrow of the war, was at last 
about to be won in 1876. 

He had a patriotic treat during the summer holidays of that 
same year. A great international congress of sericiculture was 
gathered at Milan; there were delegates from Russia, Austria, 


I-i!y and France, and Pasteur represented Ti . He was by his former pupils, his associates in his silk- 
I "uchux and Ranlin, both of whom had become 
professors at the Lyons Faculty of Sciences, and Maillet, who 
was then manager of the silkworm stablishment of Mont- 
pellier The members of the Congress had been previously 
informed of the pr. >_ramme of questions, and each intending 
speaker was armed with facts and observations. The open 
dis ms allowed Duclaux, Kaulin and Maillot to demon- 

strate the strictness and perfection of the experimental method 
which they had learned from their master and which they were 
teaching in their turn. 

is formed a delightful interlude ; one on the lake of 
Como was an enchantment. Then the French dt il _ I s were 
offered the pleasant surprise of a visit to an immense seeding 
establishment in the nei^hhourhood of Milan, which had been 
named after Pasteur. We have an account of this visit in a 
bter to J. B. Dumas (September 17) . 

' M\ Master ... I very much regret that you are not 

here : you would have shared my satisfaction. I am dating 
my letter from Milan, but in reality, the congress being ended, 
we are staying at Signor Susani's country house for a few days, 
ii re, from .Inly 4, sixty or seventy women are busy for ten 
hours every day with microscopic examinations of absolute 

iracy. I never saw a better arranged establishment. 

,000 moth cells are put under the microscope everj day. 
The order and cleanliness are admirable; any error is made 
impossible by the organization of a second test following t 

' I felt, in seeing my name in large letters on the facade of 

thai Bplendid establishment, a joy which compe; for much 

of the frivolous opposition I have encountered from some of 

countrymen these last few years; it is a spontaneous 

boi ■ .mi the proprietor i studies. Many sericicultors 

do their seeding themselves, by selection, or have it done by 
ipetenl work, rs accustomed to the operation. The harvest 
from thai lent seed depends on the climate only; in a 

kVOUrable season the production often reaches fifty 
or seventy kilogrammes per ounce of twenty-five grammes." 

Signer Busani was looking forward to producing for that one 
j r 80,000 ounces of s.ed. In the presence of the prodigious 
activity of this ▼eril I where, besides the microscope 

1873—1877 29 

women, more than one hundred persons were occupied in various 
ways, washing the mortars with which the moths are pounded 
before being put under the microscopes, cleansing the slides, 
etc. ; in fact, doing those various delicate but simple operations 
which had formerly been pronounced to be impracticable — 
Pasteur's thoughts went back to his experiments in the Pont- 
Gisquet greenhouse, to the modest beginnings of his process, 
now so magnificently applied in Italy. A month before this, 
J. B. Dumas, presiding at a scientific meeting at Clermont 
Ferrand, had said — 

' The future belongs to Science ; woe to the nations who 
close their eyes to this fact. . . . Let us call to our aid on this 
neutral and pacific ground of Natural Philosophy, where defeats 
cost neither blood nor tears, those hearts which are moved by 
their country's grandeur ; it is by the exaltation of science that 
France will recover her prestige." 

Those same ideas were expressed in a toast given by Pasteur 
in the name of France at a farewell banquet, when the 300 
members of the Sericiculture Congress were present. 

'Gentlemen, I propose a toast — To the peaceful strife of 
Science. It is the first time that I have the honour of being 
present on foreign soil at an international congress ; I ask my- 
self what are the impressions produced in me, besides these 
courteous discussions, by the brilliant hospitality of the noble 
Milanese city, and I find myself deeply impressed by two 
propositions. First, that Science is of no rationality; ani 
secondly, in apparent, but only in apparent, contradiction, that 
Science is the highest personification of nationality. Science 
has no nationality because knowledge is the patrimony of 
humanity, the torch which gives light to the world. Science 
should be the highest personification of nationality because, of 
all the nations, that one will always be foremost which shall 
be first to progress by the labours of thought and of intelligence. 

' Let us therefore strive in the pacific field of Science for the 
pre-eminence of our several countries. Let us strive, for strife 
is effort, strife is life when progress is the goal. 

'You Italians, try to multiply on the soil of your beautiful 
and glorious country the Tecchi, the Brioschi, the Tacchini, 
the Sella, the Cornalia. . . . You, proud children of Austria- 
Hungary, follow even more firmly than in the past the fruitful 
impulse which an eminent statesman, now your representative 
at the Court of England, has given to Science and Agriculture. 


We, who arc here | I . do not forget that the first 6erieicul- 

ture establishment was founded in Austria. As to you, 
Japanese, may the cultivation of Science be numbered among 
3 of your care in the amazing social and political 
fcransfarmatioD of which you an- giving the marvellous spec- 
tacle to the world. We Frenchmen, bending under the sorrow 
of our mutilated country, should show once again that great 
trials may gi to great thoughts and great actions. 

I drink to the peaceful strife of Science." 

" You will find," wrote Pasteur to Dumas, telling him of 
this toast, w hich had been received with enthusiastic applause, 
" an echo of the feelings with which you have inspired your 
] npils on the grandeur and the destiny of Science in modern 

The tender and delicate side of this powerful spirit was thus 
once again apparent in this deference to his master in the midst 
of acclamations, and in those deep and noble ideas expressed 
in the middle of a noisy banquet. But it was chiefly in his 
private life that his open-heartedness, his desire to love and 
to be loved, became apparent. That great genius had a child- 
like heart, and the charm of this was incomparable. 

He once said : ' The recompense and the ambition of a 
scientist is to conquer the approbation of his peers and of the 
masters whom he venerates." He had already known that 
recompense and could satisfy that ambition. Dumas had 
known and appreciated him for thirty years; Lister had pro- 
claimed his gratitude; Tyndall — an indefatigable excursionist, 
who loved to survey wide horizons, and who in his celebrated 
classes was wont to make use of comparisons with altitudes 
and heights and everything which opens a clear and vast out- 
k -had B great admiration for the wide development of Pas- 
teur's work. Now. Pasteur's experiments had been strongly 
tcked by a young English physician, Dr. Bastian, who had 
icited in the English and American public a bitter prejudice 
rinsl the results announced by Pasteur on the subject of 
spontaneous generation. 

'The confusion and uncertainty.'' wr t. Tyndall to Pas- 
teur. " have finally become such that, six months ago, I thought 
that it would be rendering as to Sen nee, at the same 

time as justice to yourself, if the question were subjected to a 
fresh inv. itigation. 

Putting mto practice an idea which I had entertained six 

1873—1877 SI 

years ago — the details of which are set out in the article in the 
British Medical Journal which I had the pleasure to send you — 
I went over a large portion of the ground on which Dr. Bastian 
had taken up his stand, and refuted, I think, many of the fal- 
lacies which had misled the public. 

" The change which has taken place since then in the tone 
of the English medical journals is quite remarkable, and I am 
disposed to think that the general confidence of the public in 
the accuracy of Dr. Bastian's experiments has been consider- 
ably shaken. 

" In taking up these investigations, I have had the oppor- 
tunity of refreshing my memory about your labours ; they have 
reawakened in me all the admiration which I felt for them 
when I first read of them. I intend to continue these investiga- 
tions until I have dispersed all the doubts which may have 
arisen as to the indisputable accuracy of your conclusions." 

And Tyndall added a paragraph for which Pasteur modestly 
substituted asterisks in communicating this letter to the 

" For the first time in the history of Science we have the 
right to cherish the sure and certain hope that, as regards epi- 
demic diseases, medicine will soon be delivered from quackery 
and placed on a real scientific basis. When that day arrives, 
Humanity, in my opinion, will know how to recognize that it is 
to you that will be due the largest share of her gratitude." 

Tyndall was indeed qualified to sign this passport to immor- 
tality. But in the meanwhile a struggle was necessary, and 
Pasteur did not wish to leave the burden of the discussion even 
on such shoulders as Tyndall' s ! Moreover he was interested 
in his opponent. 

" Dr. Bastian," writes M. Duclaux, " had some tenacity, a 
fertile mind, and the love, if not the gift, of the experimental 
method." The discussion was destined to last for months. 
In general (according to J. B. Dumas' calculation) " at the end 
of ten years, judgment on a great thing is usually formed; it 
is by then an accomplished fact, an idea adopted by Science or 
irrevocably repudiated." Pasteur, on the morrow of the Milan 
Congress, might feel that it had been so for the adoption of his 
system of cellular seeding, but such was not the case in this 
question of spontaneous generation. The quarrel had started 
again at the Academy of Sciences and at the Academy of Medi- 
cine; it was now being revived in Engiand, and Bastian pro- 


: to come himself and experiment in the laboratory of 
the Ecole Normale. 

For q< arly twenty yean/' said Pasteur, " I have pursm <1. 

without finding it, a proof of life existing without an anfc rior 
I similar life. The consequences of such a discovery would 
be incalculable; natural science in gem ral, and medicine and 
philosophy in particular, would receive therefrom an impulse 
which cannot be foreseen. Therefore, whenever I hear that 
this discovery baa been made, I hasten to verify the assertions 
of my fortunate rival. It is true that I hasten towards him 
with some degree of mistrust, so many times have I experienced 
that, in the difficult art of experimenting, the very eleven st 
staler at every step, and that the interpretation of facts is no 
less perilous." 

Dr. Bastian operated on acid urine, boiled and neutralized 
by a solution of potash heated to a temperature of 120° C. If, 
ter the flask of urine had cooled down, it was heated to a 
temperature of 50° C. in order to facilitate the development of 
germs, the liquid in tvn hours' time swarmed with bacteria. 
' Those facts prove spontaneous g< on," said Dr. Bastian. 

Pasteur invited him to replace his boiled solution of potash by 
S fragment of solid potash, after heating it to 110° C, in order to 
avoid the bacteria germs which might be contained in the 
aqueous solution. This question of the germs of inferior 
organisms possibly contained in water was — during the course 
of that protracted discussion — studied by Pasteur with the assist- 
ance of M. Jou!" it. Professor of Physics at the College Rollin. 
. h germs o be found even in the distilled water of labo- 

ratories ; it was sufficient that the water should be poured in a, 
thin stream through the air to I" come contaminated. Spring 
if slowly hit. r< >1 through a solid mass of ground, alone 
ontained no germs. 
There was also the question of the urine and that of the re- 
t. The urine, oollected by Dr. Bastian in a vase and 
placed into a retort, neither of which had been put through a 
flame, might contain spox I bacillus called ba, illus subtilis, 

■.Inch real resistance to the action of heat. Thi 

res do not develop in notably acid Liquids, but the liquid hav- 
Lized or rendered slightly alkaline by the potash. 
the development of germs took place. The thing therefore to 

be done was to oollecl the urine in a v. is.' and introduce it 11 
a retort both of which had been put through a flame. Aft 

1873—1877 83 

that, no organisms were produced, as was stated in the thesis 
of M. Chamberland, then a curator at the laboratory, and who 
took an active part in these experiments. 

A chapter might well have been written by a moralist " On 
the use of certain opponents " ; for it was through that discus- 
sion with Bastian that it was discovered how it was that — at 
the time of the celebrated discussions on spontaneous genera- 
tion—the heterogenists, Pouchet, Joly, and Musset, operating 
as Pasteur did, but in a different medium, obtained results ap- 
parently contradictory to Pasteur's. If their flasks, filled with 
a decoction of hay, almost constantly showed germs, whilst Pas- 
teur's, full of yeast water, were always sterile, it was because 
the hay water contained spores of the bacillus subtilis. The 
spores remained inactive as long as the liquid was preserved 
from the contact of air, but as soon as oxygen re-entered the 
flask they were able to develop. 

The custom of raising liquids to a temperature of 120° C. \/ 
in order to sterilize them dates from that conflict with Bastian. 
11 But," writes M. Duclaux, "the heating to 120° of a flask 
half filled with liquid can sterilize the liquid part only, 
allowing life to persist in those regions which are not in contact 
with the liquid. In order to destroy everything, the dry walls 
must be heated to 180° C." 

A former pupil of the Ecole Normale, who had been a curator 
in Pasteur's laboratory since October, 1876, Boutroux by name, 
who witnessed all these researches, wrote in his thesis : " The 
knowledge of these facts makes it possible to obtain absolutely 
pure neutral culture mediums, and, in consequence, to study 
as many generations as are required of one unmixed micro- 
organism, whenever pure seed has been procured." 

Pasteur has defined what he meant by putting tubes, cotton, 
vases, etc. , through a flame. " In order to get rid of the micro- 
scopic germs which the dusts of air and of the water used for 
the washing of vessels deposit on every object, the best means 
is to place the vessels (their openings closed with pads of cotton 
wool) during half an hour in a gas stove, heating the air in 
which the articles stand to a temperature of about 150° C. to 
200° C. The vessels, tubes, etc., are then ready for use. The 
potton wool is enclosed in tubes or in blotting-paper." 

What Pasteur had recommended to surgeons, when he ad- 
vised them to pass through a flame all the instruments they 
jused, had become a current practice in the laboratory ; the least 


pad of cotton wool used as a stopper was previously sterilized. 
Thus was an entirely new technique rising fully armed and 
ready to repel new attacks and ensure new victories. 

If Pasteur was so anxious to drive Dr. Bastian to the wall. 
it was because he saw behind that so-called experiment on 
spontaneous generation a cause of perpetual conflict with phy- 
sicians and surgeons. Some of them desired to repel purely 
and simply the whole theory of germs. Others, disposed to 
admit the results of Pasteur's researches, as laboratory work. 
did not admit his experimental incursions on clinical ground. 
Pasteur therefore wrote to Dr. Bastian in the early part of 
July, 1877— 

1 Do you know why I desire so much to fight and conquer 
you? it is because you are one of the principal adepts of a 
lical doctrine which I believe to be fatal to progress in the 
art of healing — the doctrine of the spontaneity of all diseases. 
. That is an error which, I repeat it, is harmful to medical 
progrei-.-. From the prophylactic as well as from the thera- 
peutic point of view, the fate of the physician and surgeon 
depends upon the adoption of the one or the other of these two 



The confusion of ideas on the origin of contagious and epidemic 
diseases was about to be suddenly enlightened ; Pasteur had 
now taken up the study of the disease known as charbon or 
splenic fever. This disease was ruining agriculture ; the 
French provinces of Beauce, Brie, Burgundy, Nivernais, Berry, 
Champagne, Dauphine and Auvergne, paid a formidable yearly 
tribute to this mysterious scourge. In the Beauce, for in- 
stance, twenty sheep out of every hundred died in one flock; 
in some parts of Auvergne the proportion was ten or fifteen per 
cent., sometimes even twenty-five, thirty-five, or fifty per cent. 
At Provins, at Meaux, at Fontainebleau, some farms were 
called charbon farms ; elsewhere, certain fields or hills were 
looked upon as accursed and an evil spell seemed to be thrown 
over flocks bold enough to enter those fields or ascend those hills. 
Animals stricken with this disease almost always died in a few 
hours; sheep were seen to lag behind the flock, with drooping 
head, shaking limbs and gasping breath ; after a rigor and some 
sanguinolent evacuations , occurring also through the mouth and 
nostrils, death supervened, often before the shepherd had had 
time to notice the attack. The carcase rapidly became dis- 
tended, and the least rent in the skin gave issue to a flow of 
black, thick and viscid blood, hence the name of anthrax given 
to the disease. It was also called splenic fever, because 
necropsy showed that the spleen had assumed enormous dimen- 
sions ; if that were opened, it presented a black and liquid pulp. 
In some places the disease assumed a character of extreme viru- 
lence ; in the one district of Novgorod, in Russia, 56,000 head 
of cattle died of splenic infection between 1867 and 1870. 
Horses, oxen, cows, sheep, everything succumbed, as did also 
528 persons, attacked by the contagion under divers forms ; a 



pin prick or & scratch is sufficient to inoculate shepherds, 
butchers, knackers or farmers with the malignant pustule. 

Though a professor at the Alfort Veterinary School, M. 
Delafond, did point out to his pupils as far back as 1838 that 
charbon blood contained "little rods," as he called them; it 
was only looked upon by himself and them as a curiosity with 
no scientific importance. Davaine, when he — and Rayer as 
well— reo 'grazed in 1850 those little filiform bodies in the blood 
of animals dying of splenic fever, he too merely mentioned 
the fact, which seemed to him of so little moment that he did 
not even report it in the first notice of his works edited by 

It was only eleven years later that Davaine — struck, as he 
himself gladly acknowledged, by reading Pasteur's paper on 
the butyric ferment, the little cylindrical rods of which offer all 
the characteristics of vibriones or bacteria — asked himself 
whether the filiform corpuscles seen in the blood of the charbon 
victims might not act after the manner of ferments and be the 
cause of the disease. In 1863, a medical man at Dourdan, 
whose neighbour, a farmer, had lost twelve sheep of charbon in 
a week, sent blood from one of these sheep to Davaine, who 
hastened to inoculate some rabbits with this blood. He recog- 
nized the presence of those little transparent and motionless rods 
which he called bacteridia (a diminutive of bacterium, or rod- 
shaped vibriones). It might be thought that the cause of the 
evil was found, in other words that the relation between those 
bacteridia and the disease which had caused death could not be 
doubted. But two pn s of the Val de Grace, Jaillard and 

Leplat, refuted these experiments. 

Tii- v had procured, is the middle of the summer, from a 
knacker's yard near Chartres, a little blood from a cow which 

i died of anthrax, and they inoculated some rabbits with it. 
Th< rabbits died, bul without presenting any bacteridia. Jail- 
lard and I., plat therefore affirmed thai Bplenic fever was not 
an affection caused by parasites, thai the bacteridium was an 

•lienomcnon of the disease and could not be looked upon 

sol it. 

:ie, on repeating Jaillard and Leplat'e experiments, 

found a new interpretation ; he alleged thai the disease they had 

inoculated was uo1 anthrax. Then Jaillard and Leplal ob- 

B little diseased sheep's blood from M. Bouttt, a 

• rinary surgeon si Chartres, and tried that instead of cow's 

1877— 1S7D 37 

blood. The result was identical : death ensued, but no bac- 
teridia. Were there then two diseases? 

Others made observations in their turn. It occurred tQ a 
young German physician, Dr. Koch, who in 1876 was begin- 
ning his career in a small village in Germany, to seek a culture 
medium for the bacteridium. A few drops of aqueous humour, 
collected in the eyes of oxen or of rabbits, seemed to him 
favourable. After a few hours of this nutrition the rocls seen 
under the microscope were ten or twenty times larger than at 
first; they lengthened immoderately, so as to cover the whole 
slide of the microscope, and might have been compared to a 
ball of tangled thread. Dr. Koch examined those lengths, and 
after a certain time noticed little spots here and there looking 
like a punctuation of spores. Tyndall, who knew how to secure 
continuous attention by a variety of comparisons, said at a scien- 
tific conference in Glasgow a few months later that those little 
ovoid bodies were contained within the envelope of the filament 
like peas in their pods. It is interesting to note that Pasteur, 
when he studied, in connection with silkworm diseases, the 
mode of reproduction of the vibriones of flachery, had seen 
them divide into spores similar to shining corpuscles ; he had 
demonstrated that those spores, like seeds of plants, could re- 
vive after a lapse of years and continue their disastrous work. 
The bacterium of charbon, or bacillus anthracis as it now began 
to be called, reproduced itself in the same way, and, when 
inoculated by Dr. Koch into guinea-pigs, rabbits and mice, pro- 
voked splenic fever as easily and inevitably as blood from the 
veins of an animal that had died of the disease. Bacilli and 
spores therefore yielded the secret of the contagion, and it 
seemed that the fact was established, when Paul Bert, in 
January, 1877, announced to the Societe de Biologie that it was 

' possible to destroy the bacillus anthracis in a drop of blood by 
compressed oxygen, to inoculate what remained, and to re- 
produce the disease and death without any trace of the bac- 
teridium. . . . Bacteridia," he added, "are therefore neither 
the cause nor the necessary effect of splenic fever, which must 
be due to a virus." 

Pasteur tackled the subject. A little drop of the blood of an 
animal which had died of anthrax — a microscopic drop — was 
laid, sown, after the usual precautions to ensure purity, in a 
sterilized balloon which contained neutral or slightly alkaline 
urine. The culture medium might equally be common house- 

6 2 


hold broth, or beer-yeast water, either of them neutralized by 
potash. . :' hours, a sort of flake was floating in the 

liquid ; the bacteridia could be seen, not under the shape of 
short broken rods, but with the appearance of filaments, 
gled like a skein; the culture medium being highly favour- 
able, they were rapidly growing longer. A drop of that liquid, 
abstracted from the first vessel, was sown into a second vessel, 
of which one drop was again placed into a third, and so on, 
until the fortieth flask ; the seed of each successive culture came 
from a tiny drop of the preceding one. If a drop from one of 
those flasks was introduced under the skin of a rabbit or 
guinea-pig, splenic fever and death immediately ensued, with 
flic same symptoms and characteristics as if the original drop 
of blood had been inoculated. In the presence of the results 
from those successive cultures, what became of the hypothesis 
of an inanimate substance contained in the first drop of blood? 
It was now diluted in a proportion impossible to imagine. It 
would therefore be absurd, thought Pasteur, to imagine that 
the last virulence owed its power to a virulent agent existing 
in the original drop of blood ; it was to the bacteridium, multi- 
plied in each culture, and to the bacteridium alone, that this 
pov is due ; the life of the bacteridium had made the 

virulence. 'Anthrax is therefore," Pasteur declared, "the 
disease of the bacteridium, as trichinosis is the dil of the 

trichina, as itch is the disease of its Bpecia] acarus, with this 
circumstance, however, that, in anthrax, the parasite can only 
be seen through a microscope, and very much enlarged." After 
the bacteridium had presented those long filaments, within a 
few hours, two days at the most, anothi le follow, 

amidst those filaments, appeared the oval shapes, the germs, 
spores or see: inted out by Dr. Koch. Those spores, sown 
in broth, reproduced in their turn the little packets of tang 
filaments, tfc I ridia. Pasteur reported that "one single 
germ of 1 idium in the drop which is sown multiplies 

during the following hours and enda by tilling the whole liquid 
with such a thickness of bacteridia that, to the naked eye, it 
i qm thai carded cotton has been mixed with the broth.* 1 
M. Chamberland, a pupil who became intimately ited 

with this work on anthrax, has •: | follows what Pasteur 

had now achieved : " By his admirable process of culture out- 
side organism, I f shows that the rods which exist in the 
blood, and for which he has preserved the name of bacteridia 



given them by Davaine, are living beings capable of being in- 
definitely reproduced in appropriate liquids, after the manner 
of a plant multiplied by successive cuttings. The bacterium 
does not reproduce itself only under the filamentous form , but 
also through spores or germs, after the manner of many plants 
which present two modes of reproduction, by cuttings and by 
seeds." The first point was therefore settled. The ground 
suspected and indicated by Davaine was now part of the domain 
of science, and preserved from any new attacks. 

Yet Jaillard and Leplat's experiments remained to be ex- 
plained : how had they provoked death through the blood of a 
splenic fever victim and found no bacteridia afterwards? It 
was then that Pasteur, guided, as Tyndall expressed it, by 
" his extraordinary faculty of combining facts with the reasons 
of those facts," placed himself, to begin with, in the condi- 
tions of Jaillard and Leplat, who had received, during the 
height of the summer, some blood from a cow and a sheep 
which had died of anthrax, that blood having evidently been 
abstracted more than twenty-four hours before the experiment. 
Pasteur, who had arranged to go to the very spot, the knacker's 
yard near Chartres, and himself collect diseased blood, wrote 
to ask that the carcases of animals which had died of splenic 
fever should be kept for him for two or three days. 

He arrived on June 13, 1877, accompanied by the veterinary 
surgeon, M. Boutet. Three carcases were awaiting him : that 
of a sheep which had been dead sixteen hours, that of a horse 
whose deatty dated from the preceding day, and that of a cow 
which must have been dead for two or three days, for it had 
been brought, from a distant village. The blood of the recently 
diseased she^p : contained bacteridia of anthrax only. In the 
blood of the horse, putrefaction vibriones were to be found, 
besides the bacteridia, and those vibriones existed in a still 
greater proportion in the blood of the cow. The sheep's blood, 
inoculated into guinea-pigs, provoked anthrax with pure bac- 
teridia ; that of the cow and of the horse brought a rapid death 
with no bacteridia. 

Henceforth what had happened in Jaillard and Leplat's ex- 
periments, and in the incomplete and uncertain experiments 
of Davaine, became simple and perfectly clear to Pasteur. 
well as the confusion caused by another experimentalist who 
had said his say ten years after the discussions of Jaillard, 
Leplat and Davaine. 


This was a Paris veterinary Burgeon, M. Signol. He had 
written to t!. ly of Sciences that it was enough that a 

healthy animal should he felled, or rather asphyxiated, for 
blood, tab rn the deeper veins, to become violently viru- 

lent within sixteen hours. M. Signol thought he had b< 
motionless bacteridia similar to the bacillus anthracis ; but those 

teridia, he Baid, wi re incapable of multiplying in the inocu- 
lated animals. Vet the blood was so very virulent that animals 

idly succumbed in a manner analogous to death by splenic 

er. A Commission was nominated to ascertain the facts ; 

9tenr was made a member of it, as wa9 also his colleag 
Bouillaud— still so quick and alert, in spite of his eighty ye.: 
that he looked less like an old man than like a wrinkled young 
man— and another colleague, twenty years younger, Bouley, 
the fir rinary surgeon in France who had a seat at the 

Institute. The latter was a tall, handsome man, with a some- 
what military appearance, and an expression of energetic good 
humour which his disposition fully justified. He was eager to 
help in the propagation of new ideas and discoveries, and soon, 
with eager enthusiasm, placed his marked talents as a writer 
and orator at Pasteur's disposal. 

On the day when the Commission met, M. Signol showed 
the car >f a horse, which he had sacrificed for this experi- 

ment, having asphyxiated it when in excellent health. Pasteur 
uncovered the deep veins of the horse and showed to Bouley, and 
;.lso to Messrs. Joubcrt and Chamberland. a long vibrio, so 

nslucid as to be almost invisible, creeping, flexible, and 
which, according to Pasteur's comparison, slipped between the 
globules of the blood as a serpent slips between high grasses ; 
it was the septic vibrio. From the peritoneum, where it 
swarms, that vibrio passes into the blood a few hours after 

•h; it represents the vanguard of the vibrionea of putrefac- 
tion. When .1 ullard and had asked for blood infected 
with anthrax, they had received blood which was at the same 
time' septic. It was septicemia (so prompt in its action that 
inoculated rabbits or sheep perish in twenty-four or thirty-six 
huiirs* that had killed Jaillard and Leplat's rabbits. It was 
also septicemia, pi ivoked by this vibrio <or its germs, for it 
t i has germs), that M. Signol had unknowingly inoculated 
into the animals upon which he experimented. Successive 
cultures of that septic vibrio enabled Pasteur to show, as he 
had done for the bacillus anthracis. that one drop of those cul- 

1877—1879 41 

tures caused septicaemia in an animal. But, while the bacillus 
anthraeis is aerobic, the septic vibrio, being anaerobic, must be 
cultivated in a vacuum, or in carbonic acid gas. And, cultivat- 
ing those bacteridia and those vibriones with at least as much 
care as a Dutchman might give to rare tulips, Pasteur succeeded 
in parting the bacillus anthraeis and the septic vibrio when 
they were temporarily associated. In a culture in contact with 
air, only bacteridia developed, in a culture preserved from air ; 
only the septic vibrio. 

What Pasteur called " the Paul Bert fact " now alone re- 
mained to be explained ; this also was simple. The blood Paul 
Bert had received from Chartres was of the same quality as 
that which Jaillard and Leplat had had ; that is to say already 
septic. If filaments of bacillus anthraeis and of septic vibriones 
perish under compressed oxygen, such is not the case with 
the germs, which are extremely tenacious ; they can be kept for 
several hours at a temperature of 70° C, and even of 95° C. 
Nothing injures them, neither lack of air, carbonic acid gas nor 
compressed oxygen. Paul Bert, therefore, killed filamentous 
bacteridia under the influence of high pressure ; but, as the 
germs were none the worse, those germs revived the splenic 
fever. Paul Bert came to Pasteur's laboratory, ascertained 
facts and watched experiments. On June 23, 1877, he hastened 
to the Societe de Biologie and proclaimed his mistake, acting in 
this as a loyal Frenchman, Pasteur said. 

In spite of this testimony, and notwithstanding the admira- 
tion conceived for Pasteur by certain medical men — notably H. 
Gueneau de Mussy, who published in that very year (1877) a 
paper on the theory of the contagium germ and the application 
of that theory to the etiology of typhoid fever — the struggle 
was being continued between Pasteur and the current medical 
doctrines. In the long discussion which began at that time 
in the Academie de Medecine on typhoid fever, some masters 
of medical oratory violently attacked the germ theory, pro- 
claiming the spontaneity of living organism. Typhoid fever, 
they said, is engendered by ourselves within ourselves. Whilst 
Pasteur was convinced that the day would come — and that 
was indeed the supreme goal of his life work — when contagioi/j 
and virulent diseases would be effaced from the preoccupations, 
mournings and anxieties of humanity, and when the infinite- 
simally small, known, isolated and studied, would at last be 
vanquished, his ideas were called Utopian dream« 



The old professors, whose career had been built on a com- 
bination of theories which they were pleased to call medical 
truth, dazed by 6uch startling novelties, endeavoured, at did 
Piorry, to attract attention to their former writings. "It is 
not the disease, an abstract being," said Piorry, " which we 
have to treat, but the patient, whom we must study with th> 
greatest care by all the physical, chemical and clinical me 
which Science offers." 

The contagion which Pasteur showed, appearing clearly in 
the disorders visible in the carcases of inoculated guinea-pigs, 
was counted as nothing. As to the assimilation of a laboratory 
iperiment on rabbits and guinea-pigs to what occurred in 
human pathology, it may be guessed that it was quite out of 
the question for men who did not even admit the possibility of a 
comparison between veterinary medicine and the other. It 
would be interesting to reconstitute these hostile surroundings 
in order to appreciate the efforts of will required of Pasteur to 
enable him to triumph over all the obstacles raised before him 
in the medical and the veterinary world. 

The Professor of Alfort School, Colin, who had, he said, 
made 500 experiments on anthrax within the last twelve years, 
stated, in a paper of seventeen pages, read at the Academy of 
■ Medicine on July 31, that the results of Pasteur's experiments 
had not the importance which Pasteur attributed to them. 
Among many other objections, one was considered by Colin as 
a fatal one — the existence of a virulent agent situated in th< 
blood, besides the bacteridia. 

Bouley, who had just communicated to the Academy of 
-ciences some notes by M. Toussaint, professor at the Toulouse 
veterinary school, whose experiments agreed with those of 
Pasteur, was nevertheless a little moved by Colin's reading. 
He wrote in that sense to Pasteur, who was then spending his 
holidays in the Jura. Pasteur add:- seed to him an answer as 
vigorous as any of his replies at th< lezny. 

" Arbois, August 18, 1877. — My dear colleague ... I 
hasten to answer your letter. I should like to accept literally 
honour which you confer upon me by calling me 'your 
master,' and to give you a severe reprimand, you faith- 
less man, who would seem to have been shaken by M. 
Colin's n at th< :<mic des Sciences, since you are 

.-till holding forth on the possibility of a virulent agent. 
•ii'] since j'our uncertainties seem to be appeased by a new 

1877—1879 43 

notice, read by yourself, last Monday, at the Academie dea 

"Let me tell you frankly that you have not sufficiently 
imbibed the teaching contained in the papers I have read, in 
my own name and in that of M. Joubert, at the Academie des 
Sciences and at the Academy of Medicine. Can you believe 
that I should have read those papers if they had wanted the 
confirmation you mention, or if M. Colin's contradictions could 
have touched them? You know what my situation is, in these 
grave controversies ; you know that, ignorant as I am of medical 
and veterinary knowledge, I should immediately be taxed with 
presumption if I had the boldness to speak without being 
armed for struggle and for victory ! All of you, physicians and 
veterinary surgeons, would quite reasonably fall upon me if I 
brought into your debates a mere semblance of proof. 

'How is it that you have not noticed that M. Colin has 
travestied — I should even say suppressed — because it hindered 
his theory, the important experiment of the successive cul- 
tures of the bacteridium in urine? 

"If a drop of blood, infected with anthrax, is mixed with 
water, with pure blood or with humour from the eye, as was 
done by Davaine, Koch and M. Colin himself, and some of 
that mixture is inoculated and death ensues, doubt may remain 
in the mind as to the cause of virulence, especially since 
Davaine's well-known experiments on septicaemia. Our ex- 
periment is very different ..." 

And Pasteur showed how, from one artificial culture to 
another, he reached the fiftieth, the hundredth, and how a 
drop of this hundredth culture, identical with the first, could 
bring about death as certainly as a drop of infected blood. 

Months passed, and — as Pasteur used to wish in his youth 
that it might be — few passed without showing one step for- 
ward. In a private letter to his old Arbois school-fellow, Jules 
Vercel, he wrote (February 11, 1878) : " I am extremely busy ; 
at no epoch of my scientific life have I worked so hard or been 
bo much interested in the results of my researches, which will, 
I hope, throw a new and a great light on certain very important 
branches of medicine and of surgery." 

In the face of those successive discoveries, every one had a 
word to say. This accumulation of facts was looked down upon 
by that category of people who borrow assurance from a mix- 


v > ture of ignorance and prejudice. Others, on the other hand, 
.mongst whom the greatest were to be found, proclaimed that 

tsteur'fl work was immortal and that the word " theor 
used by him should be changed into that of " doctrine." One 

-..hi) thus spoke, with the right given by full knowlee. 
was Dr. Sedillot, whose open and critical mind had kept him 
from becoming like the old men described by Sainte Beuve as 
stopping their watch at a given time and refusing to recognize 
further progress. He was formerly Director of the Army 
Medical School at Strasburg, and had already retired in 1870, 
but had joined the army again as volunteer surgeon. It will 
be remembered that he had written from the Hagueneau 
ambulance to the Academic des Sciences — of which he was a 
corresponding member — to call the attention of his colleagues 
to the horrors of purulent infection, which defied his zeal and 

No one followed Pasteur's work with greater attention than 
this tall, sad-looking old man of seventy-four; he was one of 
those who had been torn away from his native Alsace, and he 
could not get over it. In March, 1878, he read a paper to the 
Academy, entitled " On the Influence of M. Pasteur's Work 
on Medicine and Surgery." 

Those discoveries, he said, which had deeply modified the 
state of surgery, and particularly the treatment of wounds, 
could be traced back to one principle. This principle was' 
applicable to various facts, and explained Lister's success, and 
the fact that certain operations had become possible, and that 
certain cases, formerly considered hopeless, were now being 
recorded on all sides. Keal progress lay there. Sedillot's 
concluding paragraph deserves to be handed down as a com- 
ment precious from a contemporary : " We shall have seen the 
conception and birth of a new surgery, a daughter of Science 
and o! Art. which will be one of the greatest wonders of our 
century. a:i 1 with which the names of Pasteur and Lister will 
remain gloriously connected." 

In that treatise, Sedillot invented a new word to charac- 

t body of organisms and infinitely small vibriones, 

teria, . etc.; he proposed to designate them all 

und.r the generic term of viicrobc. This word had, in 

the advantage of being short and of having a 

neral signification. He however felt some scruple before 
using it, and consulted Littre\ who replied on February 26, 

1877—1879 45 

1878 : "Dear colleague and friend, microbe and microbia are 
very good words. To designate the animalculae I should give 
the preference to microbe, because, as you say, it is short, and 
because it leaves microbia, a feminine noun, for the designation 
of the state of a microbe." 

Certain philologists criticized the formation of the word in 
the name of the Greek language. Microbe, they said, means 
an animal with a short life, rather than an infinitesimally 
small animal. Littre" gave a second testimonial to the word 
microbe — 

"It is true," he wrote to Sedillot, "that /juxpoftcos and 
(laxpofttos probably mean in Greek short-lived and long-lived. 
But, as you justly remark, the question is not what is most 
purely Greek, but what is the use made in our language of the 
Greek roots. Now the Greek has /3t'o?, life, fiiovv, to live, 
,8t,ov<;, living, the root of which may very well figure under the 
form of bi, bia with the sense living, in aerobia, a7iaerobia and 
microbe. I should advise you not to trouble to answer 
criticisms, but let the word stand for itself, which it will no 
doubt do." Pasteur, by adopting it, made the whole world 
familiar with it. 

Though during that month of March, 1878, Pasteur had had 
the pleasure of hearing Sedillot's prophetic words at the 
Academie des Sciences, he had heard very different language 
at the Academie de Medecine. Colin of Alfort, from the iso- 
lated corner where he indulged in his misanthropy, had 
renewed his criticisms of Pasteur. As he spoke unceasingly 
of a state of virulent anthrax devoid of bacteridia, Pasteur, 
losing patience, begged of the Academie to nominate a Com- 
mission of Arbitration. 

' I desire expressly that M. Colin should be urged to demon- 
strate what he states to be the fact, for his assertion implies 
another, which is that an organic matter, containing neither 
bacteridia nor germs of bacteridia, produces within the body of 
a living animal the bacteridia of anthrax. This would be the 
spontaneous generation of the bacillus anthracis ! " 

Colin's antagonism to Pasteur was such that he contra- 
dicted him in every point and on every subject. Pasteur having 
stated that birds, and notably hens, did not take the charbon 
disease, Colin had hastened to say that nothing was easier than 
to give anthrax to hens ; this was in July, 1877. Pasteur, who 
was at that moment sending Colin some samples of bacteridia 


culture which he had promised him, begged that he would 
kindly bring him in exchange a hen suffering from that disease, 
since it could contract it so easily. 

Pasteur told the story of this episode in March, 1878 ; it wa> 
an amusing interlude in the midst of those technical discus- 
sions. ' At the end of the week, I saw M. Colin coming into 
my laboratory, and, even before I shook hands with him, I said 
to him : ' Why, you have not brought me that diseased hen? ' 
— 'Trust me,' answered M. Colin, 'you shall have it next 
week.' — I left for the vacation ; on my return, and at the first 
meeting of the Academy which I attended, I went to M. Colin 
and said, ' Well, where is my dying hen?' 'I have only just 
begun experimenting again,' said M. Colin ; ' in a few days I 
will bring you a hen suffering from charbon.' — Days and weeks 
went by, with fresh insistence on my part and new promises 
from M. Colin. One day, about two months ago, M. Colin 
owned to me that he had been mistaken, and that it was impos- 
sible to give anthrax to a hen. ' Well, my dear colleague,' I 
said to him, ' I will show you that it is possible to give anthrax 
to hens; in fact, I will one day myself bring }-ou at Alfort a 
hen which shall die of charbon.' 

' I have told the Academy this story of the hen M. Colin had 
promised in order to show that our colleague's contradiction of 
our observations on charbon had never been very serious." 

Colin, after Bpeaking ;.hout several other things, ended by 
Baying : " I regret that I have not until now been able to hand 
to M. Pasteur a hen dying or dead of anthrax. The two that 
I had bought for that purpose were inoculated several times 
with very active blood, but neither of them has fallen ill. 
Perhaps the experiment might have succeeded afterwards, but, 
one fine day, a greedy dog prevented that by eating up the two 
birds, whose cage had probably been badly closed." On the 
Tuesday which followed this incident, the passers-by were 
somewhat surprised to see Pasteur emerging from the Ecole 

rmale, carrying a cage, within which were three hens, one 

of them dead. Thus laden, he took a fiacre, and drove to the 

mie de M ae, where, on arriving, he deposited this 

uni d object on the dct-k. He explained that the dead 

had been inoculated with charbon two days before, at 

twelve o'clock on the Sunday, with live drops of yeast water 

I as a nutritive liquid for pur ndium germs, and 

1877—1879 47 

that it had died on the Monday at five o'clock, twenty-nine 
hours after the inoculation. He also explained, in his own 
name, and in the names of Messrs. Joubert and Chamberland, 
how in the presence of the curious fact that hens were refrac- 
tory to charbon, it had occurred to them to see whether that 
singular and hitherto mysterious preservation did not have its 
cause in the temperature of a hen's body, " higher by several 
degrees than the temperature of the body of all the animal 
species which can be decimated by charbon." 

This preconceived idea was followed by an ingenious experi- 
ment. In order to lower the temperature of an inoculated 
hen's body, it was kept for some time in a bath, the water 
covering one-third of its body. When treated in that way, 
said Pasteur, the hen dies the next day. "All its blood, 
spleen, lungs, and liver are filled with bacilli anthracis sus- 
ceptible of ulterior cultures either in inert liquids or in the 
bodies of animals. We have not met with a single exception." 

As a proof of the success of the experiment, the white hen 
lay on the floor of the cage. As people might be forthcoming, 
even at the Academy, who would accuse the prolonged bath 
of having caused death, one of the two living hens, a gray 
one, who was extremely lively, had been placed in the same 
bath, at the same temperature and during the same time. 
The third one, a black hen, also in perfect health, had been 
inoculated at the same time as the white hen, with the same 
liquid, but with ten drops instead of five, to make the com- 
parative result more convincing ; it had not been subjected to 
the bath treatment. "You can see how healthy it is," said 
Pasteur ; "'it is therefore impossible to doubt that the white 
hen died of charbon; besides, the fact is proved by the bac- 
teridia which fill its body." 

A fourth experiment remained to be tried on a fourth hen, 
but the Academy of Medicine did not care to hold an all-night 
sitting. Time lacking, it was only done later, in the labora- 
tory. Could a hen, inoculated of charbon and placed in a 
bath, recover and be cured merely by being taken out of its 
bath? A hen was taken, inoculated and held down a prisoner 
in a bath, its feet fastened to the bottom of the tub, until it 
was obvious that the disease was in full progress. The hen 
was then taken out of the water, dried, and wrapped up in 
cotton wool and placed in a temperature of 35° C. The bac- 


tcridia were reabsorbed by the blood, and the hen recovered 

This was, indeed, a moBt suggestive experiment, proving 
that the mere fall of temperature from 42° C. (the tempera- 
ture of hens) to 38° C. was sufficient to cause a receptive con- 
dition ; the hen, brought down by immersion to the tempera- 
ture of rabbits or guinea-pigs, became a victim like them. 

Between Sedillot's enthusiasm and Colin' B perpetual contra- 
diction, many attentive surgeons and physicians were taking 
a middle course, watching for Pasteur's results and ultimately 
accepting them with admiration. Such was the state of mind 
of M. Lereboullet, an editor of the- Weekly Gazette of Medi- 
cine and Surgery, who wrote in an account of the .' mic de 
M-'decino meeting that " those facts throw a new light on the 
theory of the genesis and development of the bacillus anthracis. 
They will be ascertained and verified by other experimentalists. 
and it seems very probable that M. Pasteur, who I brings 
any premature or conjectural assertion to the academic tribune, 
will deduce from them conclusions of the greatest interest con- 
cerning the etiology of virulent diseases." 

But even to those who admired Pasteur as much as did M. 
Lereboullet, it did not seem that such an important part should 
immediately be attributed to microbes. Towards the end of 
his report (dated March 22, 1878) he reminded his readers that 
a discussion was open at the Academic de M^decine, and that 
the surgeon, Lexm Le Fort, did not admit the germ theory in 
its entirety. M. Le Fort recognized " all the servic « rend< 
to Burgery by laboratory Btudies, chiefly by calling d to 

rtaill accidents of WOOnda and Bores, and by provoking new 
!:■ - with a vi.-w to improving methods of i Qg and 

bandagio " Like all his colleagues at th< y, and 

like our eminent master, M. Scdillot," added M. Lereboullet, 
" M. Le Tort renders homage to the work of M. Pasteur; hut 
he remains within his rights as a practitioner and - his 

opinion as to leral application to Burgi ry." 

This was a T»iii*l way of putting it ; M . rt's words were, 

"That theory, in its applications to clinical sure rv _ j s abso- 
lutely unacceptable." For him, the original purulent infection, 
though e from tin wound, was horn under the influence 

of | 1 and local phenomena within the patient, and not 

outside him. He believed that the economy had the pov 
under various influences, to produce purulent infection. A 

1877—1879 49 

septic poison was created, born spontaneously, which was after- 
wards carried to other patients by such medicines as the tools 
and bandages and the hands of the surgeon. But, originally, 
before the propagation of the contagium germ, a purulent in- 
fection was spontaneously produced and developed. And, in 
order to put his teaching into forcible words, M. Le Fort 
declared to the Acad^mie de Medecine : "I believe in the 
interiority of the principle of purulent infection in certain 
patients ; that is why I oppose the extension to surgery of the 
germ theory which proclaims the constant exteriority of that 

Pasteur rose, and with his firm, powerful voice, exclaimed : 
" Before the Academy accepts the conclusion of the paper we 
have just heard, before the application of the germ theory to 
pathology is condemned, I beg that I may be allowed to make 
a statement of the researches I am engaged in with the colla- 
boration of Messrs. Joubert and Chamberland." 

His impatience was so great that he formulated then and 
there some headings for the lecture he was preparing, proposi- 
tions on septicaemia or putrid infection, on the septic vibrio 
itself, on the germs of that vibrio carried by wind in the shape 
of dust, or suspended in water, on the vitality of those germs, 
etc. He called attention to the mistakes which might be made 
if, in that new acquaintance with microbes, their morphologic 
aspect alone was taken account of. " The septic vibrio, for 
instance, varies so much in its shape, length and thickness, 
according to the media wherein it is cultivated, that one would 
think one was dealing with beings specifically distinct from 
each other." 

It was on April 30, 1878, that Pasteur read that celebrated 
lecture on the germ theory, in his own name and in that of 
Messrs. Joubert and Chamberland. It began by a proud exor- 
dium : "All Sciences gain by mutual support. When, subse- 
quently to my early communications on fermentations, in 1857- 
1858, it was admitted that ferments, properly so called, are liv- 
ing beings ; that germs of microscopical organisms abound on 
the surface of all objects in the atmosphere and in water ; that 
the hypothesis of spontaneous generation is a chimera ; that 
wines, beer, vinegar, blood, urine and all the liquids of the 
economy are preserved from their common changes when in 
contact with pure air — Medicine and Surgery cast their eyes 
towards these new lights. A French physician, M. Davaine, 


made a first successful application of those principles to medi- 
cine in 1863." 

Pasteur himself, elected to the Academie des Sciences as a 
mineralogist, proved by the concatenation of his studies within 
the last thirty years that Science was indeed one and all em- 
bracing. Having thus called his audience's attention to the 
bonds which connect one scientific subject with another, 
Pasteur proceeded to show the connection between his yester- 
day's researches on the etiology of Charbon to those he now 
pursued on septicaemia. He hastily glanced back on his suc- 
cessful cultures of the bacillus anthracis, and on the certain, 
indisputable proof that the last culture acted equally with the 
first in producing charbon within the body of animals. He 
then owned to the failure, at first, of a similar method of cul- 
tivating the septic vibrio : " All our first experiments failed in 
6pite of the variety of culture media that we used ; beer-yeast 
water, meat broth, etc., etc. ..." 

He then expounded, in the most masterly manner : (1) the 
idea which had occurred to him that this vibrio might be an 
exclusively anaerobic organism, and that the sterility of the 
liquids might proceed from the fact that the vibrio was killed by 
the oxygen held in a state of solution by those liquids ; (2) the 
similarity offered by analogous facts in connection with the 
vibrio of butyric fermentation, which not only lives without 
air, but is killed by air; (3) the attempts made to cultivate the 
septic vibrio in a vacuum or in the presence of carbonic acid 
gas, and the success of both those attempts; and, finally, as 
the result of the foregoing, the proof obtained that the action 
of the air kills the septic vibriones, which are then seen to 
perish, under the shape of moving threads, and ultimately to 
disappear, as if burnt away by oxygen. 

"If it is terrifying." said Pasteur. " to think that life may 
be at the mercy of the multiplication of those infinitesimally 
small creatures, it is also consoling to hope that Science will 
not always remain powerless before such enemies, since it is 
already now able to inform us that the simple contact of air is 
sometimes sufficient to destroy them. But," he continued, 
meeting his hearers' possible arguments, "if oxygen destroys 
vibriones, how can septicainia exist, as it does, in the constant 
presence of atmospheric air? How can those facts be recon- 
ciled with the germ theory? How can blood exposed to air 
become septic through the dusts contained in air? All is dark. 

1877—1879 51 

obscure and open to dispute when the cause of the phenomena 
is not known; all is light when it is grasped." 

In a septic liquid exposed to the contact of air, vibriones die 
and disappear; but, below the surface, in the depths of the 
liquid (one centimetre of septic liquid may in this case be 
called depths), "the vibriones are protected against the action 
of oxygen by their brothers, who are dying above them, and 
they continue for a time to multiply by division ; they after- 
wards produce germs or spores, the filiform vibriones themselves 
being gradually reabsorbed. Instead of a quantity of moving 
threads, the length of which often extends beyond the field of 
the microscope, nothing is seen but a dust of isolated, shiny 
specks, sometimes surrounded by a sort of amorphous gangue 
hardly visible. Here then is the septic dust, living the latent 
life of germs, no longer fearing the destructive action of oxygen, 
and we are now prepared to understand what seemed at first 
so obscure : the sowing of septic dust into putrescible liquids 
by the surrounding atmosphere, and the permanence of putrid 
diseases on the surface of the earth." 

Pasteur continued from this to open a parenthesis on diseases 
"transmissible, contagious, infectious, of which the cause 
resides essentially and solely in the presence of microscopic 
organisms. It is the proof that, for a certain number of 
diseases, we must for ever abandon the ideas of spontaneous 
virulence, of contagious and infectious elements suddenly pro- 
duced within the bodies of men or of animals and originating 
diseases afterwards propagated under identical shapes ; all those 
opinions fatal to medical progress and which are engendered 
by the gratuitous hypotheses of the spontaneous generation 
of albuminoid-ferment materia, of hemiorganism, of arche- 
biosis, and many other conceptions not founded on observa- 

Pasteur recommended the following experiment to surgeons. 
After cutting a fissure into a leg of mutton, by means of a 
bistoury, he introduced a drop of septic vibrio culture; the 
vibrio immediately did its work. " The meat under those con- 
ditions becomes quite gangrened, green on its surface, swollen 
with gases, and is easily crushed into a disgusting, sanious 
pulp." And addressing the surgeons present at the meeting : 
" The water, the sponge, the charpie with which you wash or 
dress a wound, lay on its surface germs which, as you see, have 
an extreme facility of propagating within the tissues, and which 



would infallibly bring about the death of the | I is within 
a very short time if life in their limbs did not oppose the multi- 
plication of germs. But how often, alas, is that vital r 
jM.werless! how often do the patient's constitution, his 
ness, his moral condition, the unhealthy dressings, oppose but 
an insufficient barrier to the invasion of the Infinite -inially 
Small with which you have covered the injured part ! If 1 had 
the honour of being a Burgeon, convinced as I am of the 
dangers caused by the germs of microbes scattered on the sur- 
face of every object, particularly in the hospitals, not only 
would I use absolutely clean instruments, but, after cleansing 
my hands with the greatest care and putting them quickly 
through a frame (an easy thing to do with a little practic 
I would only make use of charpie, bandages, and sponges which 
had previously been raised to a heat of 130° C. to 150° C. ; I 
would only employ water which had been heated to a temper** 
ture of 110° C. to 120° C. All that is easy in practice, and, in 
that way, I should still have to fear the germs suspended in the 
atmosphere surrounding the bed of the patient ; but observation 
shows us every day that the number of those germs is almost 
insignificant compared to that of those which lie scattered on 
the surface of objects, or in the clearest ordinary water." 

He came down to the smallest details, seeing in each one 
an application of the rigorous principles which were to trans- 
form Surgery, Medicine and Hygiene. How many human 
lives have since then been saved by the dual development of 
that one method ! The defence against microbes afforded by 
the substances which kill them or arrest their development, 
such as carbolic acid, sublimate, iodoform, salol, etc. , etc. . eon- 
f-titutes antisepsis; then the other progress, born of the first, 
the obstacle opposed to the arrival of the microbes and germs 
by complete disinfection, absolute cleanliness of the instru- 
ments and hands, of all which is to come into contact with the 
paient ; in one word, asepsis. 

It might have been prophesied at that date that Pasteur's 
surprised delight at seeing his name gratefully inscribed on the 
great Italian . stablishment of sericiculturc would one day be 
surpassed by his happiness in living to see realized some of the 
progress and benefits due to him, his name invoked in all 
operating theatres, engraved over the doors of medical and sur- 
gical wards, and a new era inaugurated. 

A presentiment of the future deliverance of Humanity from 

1877—1879 53 

those redoubtable microscopic foes gave Pasteur a fever for 
work, a thirst for new research, and an immense hope. But 
once again he constrained himself, refrained from throwing 
himself into varied studies, and, continuing what he had begun, 
reverted to his studies on splenic fever. 

The neighbourhood of Chartres being most afflicted, the 
Minister of Agriculture, anticipating the wish of the Conseil 
General of the department of Eure et Loir, had entrusted 
Pasteur with the mission of studying the causes of so-called 
spontaneous charbon, that which bursts out unexpectedly in a 
flock, and of seeking for curative and preventive means of 
opposing the evil. Thirty-six years earlier, the learned 
veterinary surgeon, Delafond, had been sent to seek, particu- 
larly in the Beauce country, the causes of the charbon disease. 
Bouley, a great reader, said that there was no contrast more 
instructive than that which could be seen between the reason- 
ing method followed by Delafond and the experimental method 
practised by Pasteur. It was in 1842 that Delafond received 
from M. Cunin Gridaine, then Minister of Agriculture, the mis- 
sion of "going to study that malady on the spot, to seek for 
its causes, and to examine particularly whether those causes 
did not reside in the mode of culture in use in that part of the 
country." Delafond arrived in the Beauce, and, having seen 
that the disease struck the strongest sheep, it occurred to him 
that it came from ' ' an excess of blood circulating in the 
vessels." He concluded from that that there might be a cor- 
relation between the rich blood of the Beauce sheep and the 
rich nitrogenous pasture of their food. 

He therefore advised the cultivators to diminish the daily 
ration ; and he was encouraged in his views by noting that 
the frequency of the disease diminished in poor, damp, or 
sandy soils. 

Bouley, in order to show up Delafond's efforts to make facts 
accord with his reasoning, added that to explain "a disease, 
of which the essence is general plethora, becoming contagious 
and expressing itself by charbon symptoms in man," Delafond 
had imagined that the atmosphere of the pens, into which the 
animals were crowded, was laden with evil gases and putrefying 
emanations which produced an alteration of the blood ' ' due at 
the same time to a slow asphyxia and to the introduction 
through the lungs of septic elements into the blood." 

It would have been but justice to recall other researches con- 

T 2 


nected with IVlafond's name. In 1863, Delafond had collected 
some blood infected with charbon, and, at a time when such 
experiments had hardly been thought of, he had attem] 
some experiments on the development of the bacteridium. under 
a watch glass, at the normal blood temperature. He had seen 
the little rods grow into filaments, and compared them to a 
"very remarkable mycelium." "I have vainly tried to see 
the mechanism of fructification," added Delafond, " but I hope 
I still may." Death struck down Delafond before he could 
continue his work. 

In 1^09 a scientific congress was held at Chartres ; one of 
the questions examined being this : " What has been done to 
oppose splenic fever in sheep? " A veterinary surgeon enu: 
rated the causes which contributed, according to him, to pro- 
duce and augment mortality by splenic fever : bad hygienic 
conditions; tainted food, musty or cryptogamized ; hi and 

vitiated air in the crowded pens, full of putrid manure ; paludic 
miasma or effluvia; damp soil flooded by storms, etc., etc. A 
well-known veterinary surgeon, M. Boutet, saw no other means 
to preserve what remained of a stricken flock but to take it to 
another soil, which, in contradiction with his colleague, he 
thought should be chosen cool and damp. No conclusion could 
be drawn. The disastrous loss caused by splenic fever in the 
Beauce alone was terrible ; it was said to have reached 
20,000,000 francs in some particularly bad years. The migra- 
tion of the tainted flock seemed the only remedy, but it was 
difficult in practice and offered danger to other flocks, aa car- 
cases of dead sheep were wont to mark the road that had been 

Pasteur, starting from the fact that the charbon disease is 
produced by the bacteridium, proposed to prove that, in a 
department like that of Eure et Loir, the dis .aintained 

itself by itself. When an animal dies of splenic fever in a 
field, it is frequently buried in the very spot where it fell; 
thus a focus of contagion is ' d. due to the anthrax spores 

mixed with the earth where other flock.- are brought to graze. 
Those germs, thought Past or, are probably like the germs of 
the flachery vibrio, which survive from one year to another 
and transmit the disease. He proposed to study the disease 
on the spot. 

It almost always happened that, when he was most anxious 
• to give himself up entirely to the study of a problem, some 

1877—1879 55 

new discussion was started to hinder him. He had certainly 
thought that the experimental power of giving anthrax to hens 
had been fully demonstrated, and that that question was dead, 
as dead as the inoculated and immersed hen. 

Colin, however, returned to the subject, and at an Academy 
meeting of July 9 said somewhat insolently, " I wish we could 
have seen the bacteridia of that dead hen which M. Pasteur 
showed us without taking it out of its cage, and which he 
took away intact instead of making us witness the necropsy 
and microscopical examination." "I will take no notice," 
eaid Pasteur at the following meeting, "of the malevolent 
insinuations contained in that sentence, and only consider M. 
Colin's desire to hold in his hands the body of a hen dead of 
anthrax, full of bacteridia. I will, therefore, ask M. Colin if 
he will accept such a hen under the following condition : the 
necropsy and microscopic examination shall be made by him- 
self, in my presence, and in that of one of our colleagues of this - 
Academy, designated by himself or by this Academy, and an 
official report shall be drawn up and signed by the persons 
present. So shall it be well and duly stated that M. Colin's 
conclusions, in his paper of May 14, are null and void. The 
Academy will understand my insistence in rejecting M. Colin's 
superficial contradictions. 

' ' I say it here with no sham modesty : I have always con- 
sidered that my only right to a seat in this place is that given 
me by your great kindness, for I have no medical or veterinary 
knowledge. I therefore consider that I must be more scrupu- 
lously exact than any one else in the presentations which I have 
the honour to make to you ; I should promptly lose all credit if I 
brought you erroneous or merely doubtful facts. If ever I am 
mistaken, a thing which may happen to the most scrupulous, 
it is because my good faith has been greatly surprised. 

"On the other hand, I have come amongst you with a pro- 
gramme to follow which demands accuracy at every step. I 
can tell you my programme in two words : I have sought for 
twenty years, and I am still seeking, spontaneous generation 
properly so called. 

' If God permit, I shall seek for twenty years and more the 
spontaneous generation of transmissible diseases. 

"In these difficult researches, whilst sternly deprecating 
frivolous contradiction, I only feel esteem and gratitude 
towards those who may warn me if I should be in error." 

56 n: i. he or PASTEUR 

The Academy d 1 that the necropsy and miscroscopic 

examination of the i hen which Pasteur was to bring to 

Colin should take pi • in the presence of a Commission com 

''d of Pasteur, Colin, Davaine, Bouley, ;ind Vulpian. This 
Commission met on the following Saturday, July 20. in the 
Council Chamber of the Academy of Medicine. M. Armand 
Moreau, a member of the Academy, joiin-d the five members 
pn a partly out of curiosity, and partly because he bad 

special reason! for wishing to speak to Pasteur after the 

Three hens were tying on the table, all of them dead. The 
first one had been inoculated under the thorax with five dropi 
of yeast water slightly alkalized, which had been given as a 
nutritive medium to some bacteridia anthraeis ; the hen 
had been placed in a bath at 25° C. and had died within 
twenty-two hours. The second one, inoculated with ten drops 
of a culture liquid, had been placed in a warmer bath. 30° C, 
and had died in thirty-six hours. The third hen, also 
inoculated and immersed, had died in forty-six hours. 

I. Bides those three dead hens, there was a living one which 
had been inoculated in the same way as the first hen. This 
one had remained for forty-three hours with one-third of its 
body inm I in a barrel of water. When it was seen in the 

laboratory that its temperature had gone down to 36° C, that 
it was incapable of eating and aeemed very ill, it was taken out 
of the tub thai very Saturday morning, and warmed in a stove 
at 4-2° C. It was now getting better, though still weak, and 
gave signs of an excellent appetite before leaving the A I my 
council chamber. 

The thud hen. which had been inoculated with ten drops, 
was dissected then and there. Bouley, after noting a sen 
infiltration at the inoculation fo :owed to the judi 

sitting in this room, thus suddenly turned into a testing labora- 
tory, numerous bacteridia ttered throughout every part of 
the hen. 

' After those ascertained results," wrote Bouley, who drew 

up the report. " M. Colin declared that it was useless to pro- 
C 1 to the necropsy of the two other hens, that which had just 
b u made leaving U0 doubt of the presence of bacilli anthraeis 
in the blood of a hen inoculated with charbon and then placed 
un ler the conditions designated by M. 1 - as making 

inoculation efficacioi 

1877—1879 57 

" The hen No. 2 has been given up to M. Colin to be used 
for any examination or experiment which he might like to 
try at Alfort. 

" Signed : G. Colin, H. Bouley, C. Davaine, L. Pasteur, 
A. Vulpian." 

"This is a precious autograph, headed as it is by M. Colin's 
signature!" gaily said Bouley. But Pasteur, pleased as he 
was with this conclusion, which put an end to all discussion 
on that particular point, was already turning his thoughts into 
another channel. The Academician who had joined the 
members of the Commission was showing him a number of 
the Revue Scientifique which had appeared that morning, and 
which contained an article of much interest to Pasteur. 

In October, 1877, Claude Bernard, staying for the last time 
at St. Julien, near Villefranche, had begun some experiments 
on fermentations. He had continued them on his return to 
Paris, alone, in the study which was above his laboratory at 
the College de France. 

When Paul Bert, his favourite pupil, M. d'Arsonval, his 
curator, M. Dastre, a former pupil, and M. Armand Moreau, 
his friend, came to see him, he said to them in short, enig- 
matical sentences, with no comment or experimental demon- 
stration, that he had done some good work during the vacation. 
"Pasteur will have to look out . . . Pasteur has only 
seen one side of the question ... I make alcohol without 
cells . . . There is no life without air ..." 

Bernard's and Pasteur's seats at the Academy of Sciences 
were next to each other, and they usually enjoyed inter-' 
changing ideas. Claude Bernard had come to the November 
and December sittings, but, with a reticence to which he had 
not accustomed Pasteur, he had made no allusion to his 
October experiments. In January, 1878, he became seriously 
ill; in his conversations with M. d'Arsonval, who was affec- 
tionately nursing him, Claude Bernard talked of his next 
lecture at the Museum , and said that he would discuss his ideas 
with Pasteur before handling the subject of fermentations. At 
the end of January M. d'Arsonval alluded to these incomplete 
revelations. "It is all in my head," said Claude Bernard, 
" but I am too tired to explain it to you." He made the same 
weary answer two or three days before his death. When he 
succumbed, on February 10, 1878, Paul Bert. M. d'Arsonval 
and M. Dastre thought it their duty to ascertain whether their 


master had left any notes relative to the work which embodied 
his last thoughts. M. d'Arsonval, after a few days' search, 
discovered some notes, carefully hidden in a cabinet in Claude 
Bernard's bedroom ; they were all dated from the 1st to the 
20th of October, 1877 ; of November and December there was 
no record. Had he then not continued his experiments during 
that period? Paul Bert thought that these notes did not 
r< present a work, not even a sketch, but a sort of programme. 
" It was all condensed into a series of masterly conclusions," 
said Paul Bert, " which evidenced certitude, but there were no 
means of discussing through which channel that certitude had 
come to his prudent and powerful mind." What should be 
done with those notes? Claude Bernard's three followers 
decided to publish them. " We must," said Paul Bert, " while 
telling the conditions under which the manuscript was found, 
give it its character of incomplete notes, of confidences made to 
itself by a great mind seeking its way, and marking its road 
indiscriminately with facts and with hypotheses in order tu 
arrive at that feeling of certainty which, in the mind of a man 
of genius, often precedes proof." M. Bert helot, to whom the 
manuscript was brought, presented these notes to the readers 
of the Revue Scieyitifique. He pointed to their character, too 
abbreviated to conclude with a rigorous demonstration, but he 
explained that several friends and pupils of Claude Bernard 
had "thought that there would be some interest for Science in 
preserving the trace of the last subjects of thought, however 
incomplete, of that great mind." 

Pasteur, after the experiment at the Academie de MtMecine, 
hurried back to his laboratory and read with avidity those last 
notes of Claude Bernard. Were they a precious find, explain- 
ing the secrets Claude Bernard had hinted at? "Should 1 
said Pasteur, " have to defend my work, this time against that 
colleague and friend for whom 1 professed deep admiration, or 
should I come across unexpected revelations, weakening and 
discrediting the results I thought 1 had definitely established? " 
His reading reassured him on that point, but saddened him 
on the other hand. Since Claude Bernard had neither desired 
nor even authorized the publication of those notes, why, said 
fceur, were they not accompanied by an experimental corr> 
Mary? Thus Claude Bernard would have been credited 
with what was good in his MSS.. and he would not have been 
held responsible for what was incomplete or defective. 

1877—1879 59 

" As for me, personally," wrote Pasteur in the first pages 
of his Critical Examination of a Postliumous Work of Claude 
Bernard on Fermentation, "I found myself cruelly puzzled; 
had I the right to consider Claude Bernard's MS. as the expres- 
sion of his thought, and was I free to criticize it thoroughly? " 
The table of contents and headings of chapters in Claude 
Bernard's incomplete MS. condemned Pasteur's work on 
alcoholic fermentation. The non-existence of life without air ; 
the ferment not originated by exterior germs ; alcohol formed 
by a soluble ferment outside life . . . such were Claude 
Bernard's conclusions. " If Claude Bernard was convinced," 
thought Pasteur, " that he held the key to the masterly con- 
clusions with which he ended his manuscript, what could have 
been his motive in withholding it from me ? I looked back 
upon the many marks of kindly affection which he had given 
me since I entered on a scientific career, and I came to the 
conclusion that the notes left by Bernard were but a pro- 
gramme of studies, that he had tackled the subject, and that, 
following in this a method habitual to him, he had, the better 
to discover the truth, formed the intention of trying experi- 
ments which might contradict my opinions and results." 

Pasteur, much perplexed, resolved to put the case before his 
colleagues, and did so two days later. He spoke of Bernard's 
silence, his abstention from any allusion at their weekly meet- 
ings. " It seems to me almost impossible," he said, " and I 
wonder that those who are publishing these notes have not per- 
ceived that it is a very delicate thing to take upon oneself, with 
no authorization from the author, the making public of private 
notebooks I Which of us would care to think it might be done 
to him ! . . . Bernard must have put before himself that 
leading idea, that I was in the wrong on every point, and taken 
that method of preparing the subject he intended to study." 
Such was also the opinion of those who remembered that 
Claude Bernard's advice invariably was that every theory 
6hould be doubted at first and only trusted when found capable 
of resisting objections and attacks. 

"If then, in the intimacy of conversation with his friends 
and the yet more intimate secret of notes put down on paper 
and carefully put away, Claude Bernard develops a plan of 
research with a view to judging of a theory — if he imagines 
experiments — he is resolved not to speak about it until those 
experiments have been clearly checked ; we should therefore 


not take from his notes the most expressly formulated pro- 
positions without reminding ourselves that all that was but a 

ject, and that he meant to go once again through the experi- 
ments he had already made." 

tern* declared himself ready to answer any one who would 

defend those experiments which he looked upon as doubtful, 

erroneous, or wrongly interpreted. "In the opposite case," 

he said, " out of respect for Claude Bernard's memory, I will 

• his experiments before discussing them." 

' ; micians discoursed on these notes as on simple 
suggestions and advised Pasteur to continue his studies with- 
out allowing himself to be delayed by mere control experi- 
ments. Others considered these notes as the expression of 

ade Bernard's thought. "That opinion," said Pasteur- 
man of sentiment as he was — "that opinion, however, does 
not explain the enigma of his silence towards me. But why 
should I look for that explanation elsewhere than in my inti- 
mate knowledge of his fine character ? Was not his silence 
a n> w proof of his kindness, and one of the effects of our 
mutual esteem ? Since he thought that he held in his hands 
a proof that the interpretation I had given to my experiments 
a fallacious, did he not simply wish to wait to inform me 
of it until the time when he thought himself ready for a definite 
statement ? I prefer to attribute high motives to my friend's 
actions, and. in my opinion, the surprise caused in me by his 
reserve towards the one colleague whom his work most inter- 
hould give way in my heart to feelings of pious gratitude. 
However. Bernard would have been the first to remind me that 
scientific truth soars above the proprieties of friendship, and 
that my duty lies in discussing views and opinions in my turn 

i full liberty." 
fceur having made this communication to the Acs lemy on 
July -2. hastily ordered three glass houses, which he intended 
to take with him into the Jura. " where I possess," he told his 
col! », " a vineyard occupying some thirty or forty square 


observations expounded in a chapter of his Studies on 

r * • I to esl kblisfa that yeast can only appear about the 
time when grapes ripen, and that it disappears in the winter 
only to show itself again at the end of the summer." There- 
fore " L'rrn)^ Btdonotyetei r in grapes." "We 
tdded, " at an epoch in the year when. ! • n ason of 

1877—1879 61 

the lateness of vegetation due to a cold and rainy season, grapes 
are still in the green stage in the vineyards of Arbois. If I 
choose this moment to enclose some vines in almost hermeti- 
cally closed glass houses, I shall have in October during the 
vintage some vines bearing ripe grapes without the exterior 
germs of wine yeast. Those grapes, crushed with precautions 
which will not allow of the introduction of yeast germs, will 
neither ferment nor produce wine. I shall give myself the 
pleasure of bringing some back to Paris, to present them to 
the Academy and to offer a few bunches to those of our col- 
leagues who are still able to believe in the spontaneous genera- 
tion of yeast." 

In the midst of the agitation caused by that posthumous 
work some said, or only insinuated, that if Pasteur was 
announcing new researches on the subject, it was because he 
felt that his work was threatened. 

' I will not accept such an interpretation of my conduct." 
he wrote to J. B. Dumas on August 4, 1878, at the very time 
when he was starting for the Jura; " I have clearly explained 
this in my notice of July 22, when I said I would make new 
experiments solely from respect to Bernard's memory." 

As soon as Pasteur's glass houses arrived, they were put up 
in the little vineyard he possessed, two kilometres from Arbois. 
While they were being put together, he examined whether the 
yeast germs were really absent from the bunches of green 
grapes; he had the satisfaction of seeing that it was so, and 
that the particular branches which were about to be placed 
under glass did not bear a trace of yeast germs. Still, fearing 
that the closing of the glass might be insufficient and that there 
might thus be a danger of germs, he took the precaution, 
' while leaving some bunches free, of wrapping a few on each 
plant with cotton wool previously heated to 150° C." 

He then returned to Paris and his studies on anthrax, whilst 
patiently waiting for the ripening of his grapes. 

Besides M. Chamberland, Pasteur had enrolled M. Eoux, 
the young man who was so desirous of taking part in the work 
at the laboratory. He and M. Chamberland were to settle down 
at Chartres in the middle of the summer. A recent student of 
the Alfort Veterinary School, M. Vinsot, joined them at his 
own request. M. Roux has told of those days in a paper on 
Pasteur's Medical Work: 

' Our guide was M. Boutet, who had unrivalled knowledge 


of th" splenic fever country, and we sometimes met M. Tous- 
Baint, who was studying the same subject as we were. We 
have kept a pleasant memory of that campaign against charbon 
in the Chartres neighbourhood. Early in the morning, we 
would visit the sheepfolds scattered on that wide plateau of the 
e, dazzling with the splendour of the August sunshine; 

D necropsies took place in M. Kabourdin's knacker's yard 
or in the farmyards. In the afternoon, we edited our experi- 
ment notebooks, wrote to Pasteur, and arranged for new 
experiments. The day was well filled, and how interesting 
and salutary was that bacteriology practised in the open 
air 1 

'On the days when Pasteur came to Chartres, we did not 
linger over our lunch at the Hotel de France ; we drove off to 
St. Germain, where M. Maunoury had kindly put his farm 
and flocks at our disposal. During the drive we talked of the 
week's work and of what remained to be done. 

' As soon as Pasteur left the carriage he hurried to the folds. 

Hiding motionless by the gate, he would gaze at the lota 
which were being experimented upon, with a careful attention 
which nothing escaped ; he would spend hours watching one 
sheep which seemed to him to be sickening. We had to remind 
him of the time and to point out to him that the towers of 

artres Cathedral were beginning to disappear in the falling 

rkness before we could prevail upon him to come away. He 

questioned farmers and their servants, giving much credit to 

the opinions of shepherds, who on account of their solitary life, 

( give their whole attention to their flocks and often become 

uious observers." 

When again at Arbois, on September 17, Pasteur began to 
write to the Minister of Agriculture a note on the practical 
ideas suggested by this first campaign. A few sheep, bought 
near Chartres and gathered in a fold, had received, amongst 
the armfuls of forage offered them, a few anthrax spores. 
Nothing had been easier than to bring these from the labora- 
tory, in a liquid culture of bacteria, and to Bcatter them on the 
field where the little flock grazed. The first meals did not give 
good scientific results, death was not easily provoked. But 

I n the experimental menu was completed by prickly plants, 

• ly to wound the sheep on their tongue or in their pharynx, 

Mich, for instance, as thistles or ears of barley, the mortality 

Q. It was perhaps not as considerable as might have 

1877—1879 63 

been wished for demonstration purposes, but nevertheless it 
was sufficient to explain how charbon could declare itself, for 
necropsy showed the characteristic lesions of the so-called spon- 
taneous splenic fever. It was also to be concluded therefrom 
that the evil begins in the mouth, or at the back of the throat, 
supervening on meals of infected food, alone or mixed with 
prickly plants likely to cause abrasion. 

It was therefore necessary, in a department like that of Eure 
et Loir, which must be full of anthrax germs, — particularly on 
the surface of the graves containing carcases of animals which 
had fallen victims to the disease, — that sheep farmers should 
keep from the food of their animals plants such as thistles, ears 
of barley, and sharp pieces of straw; for the least scratch, 
usually harmless to sheep, became dangerous through the pos- 
sible introduction of the germs of the disease. 

'It would also be necessary," wrote Pasteur, "to avoid all 
probable diffusion of charbon germs through the carcases of 
animals dying of that disease, for it is likely that the depart- 
ment of Eure et Loir contains those germs in greater quantities 
than the other departments ; splenic fever having long 
been established there, it always goes on, dead animals not 
being disposed of so as to destroy all germs of ulterior con- 

After finishing this report, Pasteur went to his little vine- 
yard on the Besancon road, where he met with a disappoint- 
ment ; his precious grapes had not ripened, all the strength of 
the plant seemed to have gone to the wood and leaves. But 
the grapes had their turn at the end of September and in 
October, those bunches that were swathed in cotton wool as 
well as those which had remained free under the glass ; there 
was a great difference of colour between them, the former 
being very pale. Pasteur placed grapes from the two series 
in distinct tubes. On October 10, he compared the grapes 
of the glass houses, free or swathed, with the neighbouring 
open-air grapes. "The result was beyond my expectations; 
the tubes of open-air grapes fermented with grape yeast after 
a thirty-six or forty-eight hours' sojourn in a stove from 25° C. 
to 30° C. ; not one, on the contrary, of the numerous tubes of 
grapes swathed in cotton wool entered into alcoholic fermenta- 
tion, neither did any of the tubes containing grapes ripened 
free under glass. It was the experiment described in my 
Studies on Beer. On the following days I repeated these 


ments with the same results." He went on to another 
expt rirnent. He cut some of the swathed bunches and hung 
them to the vines grown in the open air. thinking that those 
bunches— exactly Bimilar to those which he had found in- 
capable of fermentation — would thus get covered with the 
df alcoholic ferments, as did the bunch wn in the 

D air and their wood. After that, the bunches taken from 
under the glass and submitted to the usual regime would fer- 
ment und< r the influence of the germs which they would receive 
as well as the others ; this was exactly what happened. 

The difficulty now was to bring to the Academic des Sciences 
these branches bearing swathed bunches of grapes; in order 
to avoid the least contact to the grapes, these vine plants, as 
cious as the rarest orchids, had to be held upright all the 
way from Arbois to Paris. Pasteur came back to Paris in a 
coupe carriage on the express train, accompanied by his wife 
and daughter, who took it in turns to carry the vines. At 
last, they arrived safely at the Ecole Xormale. and from the 
Ecole Normale to the Institute, and Pasteur had the pleasure 
of bringing his grapes to his colleagues as he had brought his 
hens. "If you crush them while in contact with pure air," 
he said, " 1 defy you to Bee them ferment." A long discussion 
then ensued with M. Berthelot, which was prolonged until 
F< bruary, 1^79. 

It is a characteristic of exalted minds," wrote M. Roux, 
' to put passion into ideas. . . . For Pasteur, the alcoholic 
fermentation was correlative with the life of the ferment; 
for Bernard and M. Berthelot, it was a chemical action like 
any other, and could be accomplished without the participation 
of living cells." "In alcoholic fermentation," said M. 
rthelot, "a soluble alcoholic ferment may be produced, 
which perhaps consumes itself as il .action goes on." 

M. Roux had seen Pasteur try to "extract the soluble alco- 
holic ferment from yeast cells by crushing them in a mortar, 
by freezing them until they burst, or by putting them into 
concentrated saline solutions, in order to force by osmose the 
euccus to leave its envelo] ! asteur confessed that his 

efforts were rain. In a communication to the Academic des 
Sciences on I ■ < mber 30, 1878, he b dd — 

'It ever is an enigmi to me that it should be believed that 
the <li- of soluble ferments in fermentations properly co 

called, or of the formation of alcohol by means of sugar, inde- 

1877—1879 65 

pendently of cells would hamper me. It is true — I own it 
without hesitation, and I am ready to explain myself more 
lengthily if desired — that at present I neither see the necessity 
for the existence of those ferments, nor the usefulness of their 
action in this order of fermentations. Why should actions of 
diastase, which are but phenomena of hydration, be confused 
with those of organized ferments, or vice versa? But I do not 
see that the presence of those soluble substances, if it were 
ascertained, could change in any way the conclusions drawn 
from my labours, and even less so if alcohol were formed by 

" They agree with me who admit : 

"Firstly. That fermentations, properly so called, offer as 
an essential condition the presence of microscopic organisms. 

" Secondly. That those organisms have not a spontaneous 

" Thirdly. That the life of every organism which can exist 
away from free oxygen is suddenly concomitant with acts of 
fermentation ; and that it is so with every cell which continues 
to produce chemical action without the contact of oxygen." 

When Pasteur related this discussion, and formed of it an 
appendix to his book, Critical Examination of a Posthumous 
Work of Claude Bernard on Fermentations, his painful feelings 
in opposing a friend who was no more were so clearly evidenced 
that Sainte Claire Deville wrote to him (June 9, 1879) : " My 
dear Pasteur, I read a few passages of your new book yester- 
day to a small party of professors and savants. We all were 
much moved by the expressions with which you praise our 
dear Bernard, and by your feelings of friendship and pure 

Sainte Claire Deville often spoke of his admiration for 
Pasteur's precision of thought, his forcible speech, the clearness 
of his writings. As for J. B. Dumas, he called the attention 
of his colleagues at the Academie Francaise to certain pages 
of that Critical Examination. Though unaccustomed to those 
particular subjects, they could not but be struck by the sagacity 
and ingenuity of Pasteur's researches, and by the eloquence 
inspired by his genius. A propos of those ferment germs, which 
turn grape juice into wine, and from which he had preserved 
his swathed bunches, Pasteur wrote — 

' What meditations are induced by those results ! It is 
impossible not to observe that, the further we penetrate into the 


experimental study of germs, the more we perceive sudden 
lights and clear ideas on the knowledge of the causes of con- 
tagious diseases! Is it not worthy of attention that, in that 
Arboifl vineyard 'and it would be true of the million hectares 
of vineyards of all the countries in the world), there should not 
ha\c been, at the time when I made the aforesaid experiments, 
one single particle of earth which would not have been capable 
of provoking fermentation by a grape yeast, and that, on the 
other band, the earth of the glass houses I have mentio.e 
should have been powerless to fulfil that office? And wi. 
Because, at a given moment, I covered that earth with so 
glass. The death, if I may so express it, of a bunch of grapes 
thrown at that time on any vineyard, would infallibly h I 
occurred through the saccharomyces parasites of which I speak ; 
that kind of death would have been impossible, on the contrary, 
on the little space enclosed by my glass houses. Those few 
cubic yards of air, those few square yards of soil, were th< 
in the midst of a universal possible contagion, and they were 
safe from it." 

And suddenly looking beyond those questions of and 

vintage, towards the germs of disease and of death : "Is it 
not permissible to believe, by analogy, that a day will come 
when easily applied preventive measures will arrest those 
scourges which suddenly desolate and terrify populations ; such 
as the fearful disease (yellow fever) which has recently invaded 
Senegal and the valley of the Mississippi, or that other (bubonic 
plague", yet more terrible perhaps, which has ravaged the banks 
of the Volga." 

Pasteur, with his quick answers, his tenacious refutations, 

S looked upon as a great fighter by his colIeagU' the 

Academy, but in the laboratory, while seeking Claude Ber- 
nard's soluble ferment, he tackled subjects from which he drew 
conclusions which were amazing to physicians. 

A worker in the laboratory had had a series of furuncles. 
Pasteur, whose proverb was " Seek the microbe," asked him- 
self whether the pus of furuncles might not have an organism, 
which, carried to and fro,— for it may be said that a furuncle 
Dever comes alone— would explain the centre of inflammation 
and the recurrence of the furuncles. After abstracting— with 
the usual purity precautions — some pus from three successive 
furuncles, he found in some sterilized broth a microbe, formed 
of little rounded specks which clustered to the sides of the 

1877—1879 67 

culture vessel. The same was observed on a man whom Dr. 
Maurice Raynaud, interested in those researches on furuncles, 
had sent to the laboratory, and afterwards on a female patient 
of the Lariboisiere Hospital, whose back was covered with 
furuncles. Later on, Pasteur, taken by Dr. Lannelongue to 
the Trousseau Hospital, where a little girl was about to be 
operated on for that disease of the bones and marrow called 
osteomyelitis, gathered a few drops of pus from the inside and 
the outside of the bone, and again found clusters of microbes. 
Sown into a culture liquid, this microbe seemed so identical 
with the furuncle organism that ' ' it might be affirmed at 
first sight," said Pasteur, " that osteomyelitis is the furuncle of 

The hospital now took as much place in Pasteur's life as the 
laboratory. " Chamberland and I assisted him in those 
studies," writes M. Eoux. " It was to the Hopital Cochin 
or to the Maternity that we went most frequently, taking our 
culture tubes and sterilized pipets into the wards or operating 
theatres. No one knows what feelings of repulsion Pasteur 
had to overcome before visiting patients and witnessing post- 
mortem examinations. His sensibility was extieme, and he- 
suffered morally and physically from the pains of others ; the 
cut of the bistoury opening an abscess made him wince as if he 
himself had received it. The sight of corpses, the sad business 
of necropsies, caused him real disgust ; we have often seen him 
go home ill from those operating theatres. But his love of 
science, his desire for truth were the stronger ; he returned the 
next day." 

He was highly interested in the study of puerperal fever, 
which was still enveloped in profound darkness. Might not 
the application of hi3 theories to the progress of surgery be 
realized in obstetrics? Could not those epidemics be arrested 
which passed like scourges over lying-in hospitals ? It was still 
remembered with horror how, in the Paris Maternity Hos- 
pital, between April 1 and May 10, 1856, 64 fatalities had taken 
place out of 347 confinements. The hospital had to be close.!, 
and the survivors took refuge at the Lariboisiere Hospital, 
where they nearly all succumbed, pursued, it was thought, by 
the epidemic. 

Dr. Tarnier, a student residing at the Maternity during that 
disastrous time, related afterwards how the ignorance of the 
causes of puerperal fever was such that he was sometimes called 



away, by one of his chiefs, from some post-mortem business, 
to assist in the maternity wards ; nobody being struck by the 
thought of the infection which might thus be carried from the 
theatre to the bed of the patient. 

The discussion which arose in 1858 at the Academie de M^de- 
cine lasted four months, and hypotheses of all kinds were 
brought forward. Trousseau alone showed some prescience of 
the future by noticing an analogy between infectious surgical 
accidents and infectious puerperal accidents ; the idea of a fer- 
ment even occurred to him. Years passed ; women of the lower 
classes looked upon the Maternite" as the vestibule of death. 
In 1864, 310 deaths occurred out of 1,350 confinement cases; 
in 18G5, the hospital had to be closed. Works of cleansing and 
improvements gave rise to a hope that the " epidemic genius ' 
might be driven away. ' But, at the very beginning of 1866," 
wrote Dr. Tr^lat, then surgeon-in-chief at the Maternity, "the 
sanitary condition seemed perturbed, the mortality rose in 
January, and in February we were overwhelmed." Twenty- 
eight deaths had occurred out of 103 cases. 

Trelat enumerated various causes, bad ventilation, neigh- 
bouring wards, etc., but where was the origin of the 

I'nder the influence of causes which escape us," wrote M. 
Leon Le Fort about that time, " puerperal fever develops in a 
recently delivered woman; she becomes a centre of infection, 
and. if that infection is freely exercised, the epidemic is con- 

Tarnier, who took Trelat's place at the M;it. rniu'. in 1867, 
had been for eleven years so convinced of the infectious nature 
of puerperal fever that he thought but of arresting the evil by 
every possible means of defence, the first of which seemed to 
bim isolation of the patients. 

In 1874, Dr. Budin, then walking the hospitals, had noted in 
Edinburgh the improvement due to antisepsis, thanks to List 
Three or four years later, in 1877 and 1878, after having seen 
that, in the various maternity hospitals of Holland, Germany, 
Austria, Russia and Denmark, antisepsis was practised with 
success, he brought his impressions with him to Paris. Tarnier 
hastened to employ carbolic acid at the Maternite with excel- 
lent results, and his assistant, M. Bar, tried sublimate. While 
that new period of victory over fatal cases was beginning, 
Pasteur came to the Academie de M^decine, having found, in 

1877—1879 69 

certain puerperal infections, a microbe in the shape of a chain 
or chaplet, which lent itself very well to culture. 

" Pasteur," wrote M. Roux, " does not hesitate to declare 
that that microscopic organism is the most frequent cause of 
infection in recently delivered women. One day, in a discus- 
sion on puerperal fever at the Academy, one of his most weighty 
colleagues was eloquently enlarging upon the causes of epi- 
demics in lying-in hospitals ; Pasteur interrupted him from his 
place. ' None of those things cause the epidemic ; it is the 
nursing and medical staff who carry the microbe from an in- 
fected woman to a healthy one.' And as the orator replied that 
he feared that microbe would never be found, Pasteur went to 
the blackboard and drew a diagram of the chain-like organism, 
saying : ' There, that is what it is like ! ' His conviction was 
so deep that he could not help expressing it forcibly. It would 
be impossible now to picture the state of surprise and stupe- 
faction into which he would send the students and doctors in 
hospitals, when, with an assurance and simplicity almost dis- 
concerting in a man who was entering a lying-in ward for the 
first time, he criticized the appliances, and declared that all the 
linen should be put into a sterilizing stove." 

Pasteur was not satisfied with offering advice and criticism, 
making for himself irreconcilable enemies amongst those who 
were more desirous of personal distinction than of the progress 
of Science. In order the better to convince those who still 
doubted, he affirmed that, in a badly infected patient — what he 
usually and sorrowfully called an invaded patient — he could 
bring the microbe into evidence by a simple pin prick on 
the finger tip of the unhappy woman doomed to die the next 

' And he did so," writes M. Roux. ' In spite of the tyranny 
of medical education which weighed down the public mind, 
some students were attracted, and came to the laboratory to 
examine more closely those matters, which allowed of such 
precise diagnosis and such confident prognosis." 

What struggles, what efforts, were necessary before it could 
be instilled into every mind that a constant watch must be 
kept in the presence of those invisible foes, ready to invade 
the human body through the least scratch — that surgeons, 
dressers and nurses may become causes of infection and pro- 
pagators of death through forgetfulness ! and before the theory 
of germs and the all powerfulnesa of microbes could be put 

u 2 


under a full light a propos of that discussion on puerperal 
fever I 

But Pasteur was supported and inspired during that period, 
perhaps the most fruitful of his existence, by the prescience 
that those notions meant the salvation of human lives, and that 
mothers need no longer be torn by death from the cradle of 
their new-born infants. 

'I sh.sll force them to see; they will have to see!" he 
repeated vith a holy wrath against doctors who continued to 
talk, from their study or at their clubs, with some scepticism, of 
those newly discovered little creatures, of those ultra-microscopic 
parasites, trying to moderate enthusiasm and even confidence. 

An experimental fact which occurred about that time was 
followed with interest, not only by the Acad^mie des Sciences, 
but by the general public, whose attention was beginning to be 
awakened. A professor at the Nancy Faculty, M. Feltz, had 
announced to the Acad^mie des Sciences in March, 1879, that, 
in the blood abstracted from a woman, who had died at the 
Nancy Hospital of puerperal fever, he had found motionless 
filaments, simple or articulated, transparent, straight or curved, 
which belonged, he said, to the genus leptothrix. Pasteur, 
who in his studies on puerperal fever had seen nothing of the 
kind, wrote to Dr. Feltz, asking him to send him a few drops 
of that infected blood. After receiving and examining the 
sample, Pasteur hastened to inform M. Feltz that that lepto- 
thrix was no other than the bacillus anthracis. M. Feltz. 
much surprised and perplexed, declared himself ready to own 
his error and to proclaim it if he were convinced by examining 
blood infected by charbon, and which, he said, he should col! 
wherever he could find it. Pasteur desired to save him that 
trouble, and offered to send him three little guinea-pigs ah 
but inoculated, the one with the deceased woman's blood, the 
other with the Bscteridia of charbon-infected blood from 
Chartrt-s, the third with some charbon-infected blood from a 
Jura cow. 

The three rodents were inoculated on May 12, at three o'clock 
in the afternoon, and arrived, living, at Nancy, on the morning 
of the thirteenth. They died on the fourteenth, in the labora- 
tory of M. Feltz, who was thus able to observe them with par- 
ticular attention until their death. 

'After carefully examining the blood of the three animate 
after their death, I was unable," said M. Feltz. " to detect the 

1877—1879 71 

least difference; not only the blood, but trie internal organs, 
and notably the spleen, were affected in the same manner." 
. . . ' It is a certainty to my mind," he wrote to Pasteur, 
" that the contaminating agent has been the same in the three 
cases, and that it was the bacteridium of what you call 

There was therefore no such thing as a leptothrix puerperalis. 
And it was at a distance, without having seen the patient, that 
Pasteur said : " That woman died of charbon." With an 
honourable straightforwardness, M. Feltz wrote to the 
Academie des Sciences relating the facts. 

" It is doubly regrettable," he concluded, " that I should not 
have known charbon already last year, for, on the one hand, 
I might have diagnosed the redoubtable complication presented 
by the case, and, on the other hand, sought for the mode of 
contamination, which at present escapes me almost com- 
pletely." All he had been able to find was that the woman, a 
charwoman, lived in a little room near a stable belonging to a 
horse dealer. Many animals came there ; the stable might 
have contained diseased ones ; M. Feltz had been unable to 
ascertain the fact. 'I must end," he added, "with thanks 
to M. Pasteur for the great kindness he has shown me during 
my intercourse with him. Thanks to him, I was able to con- 
vince myself of the identity between the bacillus anthracis and 
the bacteridium found in the blood of a woman who presented 
all the symptoms of grave puerperal fever." 

At the time when that convincing episode was taking place, 
other experiments equally precise were being undertaken con- 
cerning splenic fever. The question was to discover whether it 
would be possible to find germs of charbon in the earth of the 
fields which had been contaminated purposely, fourteen months 
before, by pouring culture liquids over it. It seemed beyond all 
probability that those germs might be withdrawn and isolated 
from the innumerable other microbes contained in the soil. It 
was done, however; 500 grammes of earth were mixed with 
water, and infinitesimal particles of it isolated. The spore of 
the bacillus anthracis resists a temperature of 80° C. or 90° C, 
which would kill any other microbe ; those particles of earth 
were accordingly raised to that degree of heat and then injected 
into some guinea-pigs, several of which died of splenic fever. 
It was therefore evident that flocks were exposed to infection 
merely by grazing over certain fields in that land of the Beauce. 


For it was sufficient that some infected blood should have 
remained on the ground, for germs of bacteridia to be found 
there, perha] n later. How often was such blood spilt 

as a dead animal was being taken to the knacker's yard or 
buried on the spot! Millions of bacteridia, thus scattered on 
and below the surface of the soil, produced their spores, seeds 
of death ready to germinate. 

And y.'t n< gative facts were being opposed to these positive 
facts, and the theory of spontaneity invok* dl ' It is with 
deep sorrow," said Pasteur at the Academie de M^decine on 
November 11, 1873, "that 1 so frequently find myself obliged 
to answer thoughtless contradiction ; it also grieves me much 
to see that the medical Press speaks of these discussions in 
apparent ignorance of the true principles of experimental 
method. . . . 

" That aimlessness of criticism seems explicable to me, how- 
ever, by this circumstance — that Medicine and Surgery are, I 
think, going through a crisis, a transition. There are two oppo- 
site currents, that of the old and that of the new-born doctrine ; 
the first, still followed by innumerable partisans, rests on the 
I) lief in the spontaneity of transmissible diseases; the second 
is the theory of germs, of the living contagium with all its 
legitimate consequences. . . ." 

The better to point out that difference between epochs. 
Pasteur respectfully advised M. Bouillaud. who was taking 
part in the discussion, to read over Littn's Medicine and 
Physicians, and to compare with present ideas the chapter on 
epidemics written in L836, four years after the cholera which 
had spread terror over Paris and over France. " Poisons and 
v.-noms die out on the spot after working the evil which is 
special to them," wrote Littre\ " and are not reproduced in the 
body of the victim, but virus and miasmata are reproduced and 
propagated. Nothing is more obscure to physiologists than 
those mysterious combinations of organic elenu -nt> ; but there 
lies the dark room of uckness and of death which we must try 
to open." ' Among epidemic diseases," said Littre* in another 
passage equally noted by I'asteur, " some occupy the world and 
decimate nearly all parts of it. others are Limited to more or 
Less wide areas. The origin of the latter may be sought either 
io local circumstances of dampness, of marshy ground, of 
decomposing animal or vegetable matter, or in the change* 
winch take place in men's mode of lif*" 

1877—1879 73 

" If I had to defend the novelty of the ideas introduced into 
medicine by my labours of the last twenty years," wrote Pasteur 
from Arbois in September, 1879, "I should invoke the sig- 
nificant spirit of Littre's words. Such was then the state of 
Science in 1836, and those ideas on the etiology of great epi- 
demics were those of one of the most advanced and penetrating 
minds of the time. I would observe, contrarily to Littre's 
opinion, that nothing proves the spontaneity of great epi- 
demics ! As we have lately seen the phylloxera, imported from 
America, invade Europe, so it might be that the causes of 
great pests were originated, unknowingly to stricken countries, 
in other countries which had had fortuitous contact with the 
latter. Imagine a microscopic being, inhabiting some part of 
Africa and existing on plants, on animals, or even on men, and J 
capable of communicating a disease to the white race ; if 
brought to Europe by some fortuitous circumstance, it may 
become the occasion of an epidemic. ..." 

And, writing later, about the same passage : " Nowadays, 
if an article had to be written on the same subject, it would 
certainly be the idea of living ferments and microscopic beings 
and germs which would be mentioned and discussed as a cause. 
That is the great progress," added Pasteur with legitimate 
pride, " in which my labours have had so large a share. But 
it is characteristic of Science and Progress that they go on 
opening new fields to our vision ; the scientist, who is exploring 
the unknown, resembles the traveller who perceives further 
and higher summits as he reaches greater altitudes. In these 
days, more infectious diseases, more microscopic beings appear to 
the mind as things to be discovered, the discovery of which will 
render a wonderful account of pathological conditions and of 
their means of action and propagation, of self -multiplication 
within and destruction of the organism. The point of view is 
very different from Littre's! ! " 

On his return to Paris, Pasteur, his mind overflowing with 
ideas, had felt himself impelled to speak again, to fight once 
more the fallacious theory of the spontaneity of transmissible 
diseases. He foresaw the triumph of the germ theory arising 
from the ruin of the old doctrines — at the price, it is true, of 
many efforts, many struggles, but those were of little conse- 
quence to him. 

The power of his mind, the radiating gifts that he possessed, 
were such that his own people were more and more interested 


in the laboratory, every one trying day by day to penetrate fur- 
ther into Pasteur's thoughts. His family circle had widened ; 
his son and his daughter had married, and the two new-comers 
had soon been initiated into past results and recent experi- 
ments. He had, in his childhood and youth, been passionately 
loved by his parents and sisters, and now, in his middle age, his 
tenderness towards his wife and children was eagerly repaid by \ 
the love they bore him. He made happiness around him whilst 
he gave glory to France. 



A new microbe now became the object of the same studies 
of culture and inoculation as the bacillus anthracis. Eeaders 
of this book may have had occasion to witness the disasters 
caused in a farmyard by a strange and sudden epidemic. 
Hens, believed to be good sitters, are found dead on their nests. 
Others, surrounded by their brood, allow the chicks to leave 
them, giving them no attention; they stand motionless in the 
centre of the yard, staggering under a deadly drowsiness. A 
young and superb cock, whose triumphant voice was yesterday 
heard by all the neighbours, falls into a sudden agony, his beak 
dosed, his eyes dim, his purple comb drooping limply. Other 
chickens, respited till the next day, come near the dying and 
the dead, picking here and there grains soiled with excreta con- 
taining the deadly germs : it is chicken cholera. 

An Alsatian veterinary surgeon of the name of Moritz had 
been the first to notice, in 1869, some " granulations " in the 
corpses of animals struck down by this lightning disease, which 
sometimes kills as many as ninety chickens out of a hundred, 
those who survive having probably recovered from a slight 
attack of the cholera. Nine years after Moritz, Perroncito, an 
Italian veterinary surgeon, made a sketch of the microbe, 
which has the appearance of little specks. Toussaint studied 
it, and demonstrated that this microbe was indeed the cause of 
virulence in the blood. He sent to Pasteur the head of a cock 
that had died of cholera. The first thing to do, after isolating 
the microbe, was to try successive cultures; Toussaint had 
used neutralized urine. This, though perfect for the culture of 
the bacillus anthracis, proved a bad culture medium for the 
microbe of chicken cholera ; its multiplication soon became 
arrested. If sown in a small flask of yeast water, equally fav- 


ourable to bacteridia, the result was worse still : the microbe 
disappeared in forty-eight hours. 

"Is not that," said Pasteur — with the gift of comparison 
which made him turn each failure into food for reflection — " an 
image of what we observe when a microscopic organism proves 
to be harmless to a particular animal species? It is harmless 
because it does not develop within the body, or because its 
development does not reach the organs essential to life." 

After trying other culture mediums, Pasteur found that the 
one which answered best was a broth of chicken gristle, 
neutralized with potash and sterilized by a temperature of 
110° C. to 115° C. 

' The facility of multiplication of the micro-organism in 
that culture medium is really prodigious." wrote Pasteur in a 
duplicate communication to the Academies of Sciences and of 
Medicine (February, 1880), entitled Of Virulent Diseases, and 
in particular that commonly called Chicken Cholera. "In a 
few hours, the most limpid broth becomes turgid and is found 
to be full of little articles of an extreme tenuity, slightly 
strangled in their middle and looking at first sight like isolated 
specks ; they are incapable of locomotion. Within a few days, 
those beings, already so small, change into a multitude of 
specks so much smaller, that the culture liquid, which had at 
first become turgid, almost milky, becomes nearly clear again. 
the specks being of such narrow diameter as to be impossible to 
measure, even approximately. 

" This microbe certainly belongs to quite another group than 
that of the vibriones. I imagine that it will one day find a 
place with the still mysterious virus, when the latter are sue- 
CC8sfully cultivated, which will be soon, I hope." 

Pasteur stated that the virulence of this microbe was such 
that the smallest drop of recent culture, on a few crumbs, was 
sufficient to kill a chicken. Hens fed in this way conf 
the disease by their intestinal canal, an excellent culture 
medium for the micro-organism, and perished rapidly. Their 
infected excreta heeame a cause of contagion to the hens which 
Bhared with them the laboratory cages. Pasteur thus 
described one of these sick hens — 

" The animal Buffering from this disease is powerless, stag- 
gering, its wings droop and its bristling feathers give it the 
shape of a ball: an irresistible BOmnolence overpowers it. If 
its eyes are made to open, it seems to awake from a deep sleep. 

1880—1882 77 

and death frequently supervenes after a dumb agony, before 
the animal has stirred from its place ; sometimes there is a 
faint fluttering of the wings for a few seconds." 

Pasteur tried the effect of this microbe on guinea-pigs which 
had been brought up in the laboratory, and found it but rarely 
mortal; in general it merely caused a sore, terminating in an 
abscess, at the point of inoculation. If this abscess were 
opened, instead of being allowed to heal of its own accord, the 
little microbe of chicken cholera was to be found in the pus, 
preserved in the abscess as it might be in a phial. 

"Chickens or rabbits," remarked Pasteur, "living in the 
society of guinea-pigs presenting these abscesses, might sud- 
denly become ill and die without any alteration being seen in 
the guinea-pigs' health. It would suffice for this purpose that 
those abscesses should open and drop some of their contents 
on the food of the chickens and rabbits. 

" An observer witnessing those facts, and ignorant of the 
above-mentioned cause, would be astonished to see hens and 
rabbits decimated without apparent cause, and would believe 
in the spontaneity of the evil ; for he would be far from sup- 
posing that it had its origin in the guinea-pigs, all of them in 
good health. How many mysteries in the history of con- 
tagions will one day be solved as simply as this ! ! ! " 

A chance, such as happens to those who have the genius of 
observation, was now about to mark an immense step in 
advance and prepare the way for a great discovery. As long 
as the culture flasks of chicken-cholera microbe had been sown 
without interruption, at twenty-four hours' interval, the 
virulence had remained the same ; but when some hens were 
inoculated with an old culture, put away and forgotten a few 
weeks before, they were seen with surprise to become ill and 
then to recover, These unexpectedly refractory hens were 
then inoculated with some new culture, but the phenomenon 
of resistance recurred. What had happened? What could 
have attenuated the activity of the microbe ? Researches 
proved that oxygen was the cause; and, by putting between 
the cultures variable intervals of days, of one, two or three 
months, variations of mortality were obtained, eight hens dying 
out cf ten, then five, then only one out of ten, and at last, 
when, as in the first case, the culture had had time to get stale, 
no hens died at all, though the microbe could still be cultivated. 

" Finally," said Pasteur, eagerly explaining this pheno- 


raenon, "if you take each of these attenuated cultures as a 

rting-point for successive and uninterrupted cultures, all 
this series of cultures will reproduce the attenuated virulence 
of that which served as the starting-point ; in the same way 
non-virulence will reproduce non-virulence." 

And, while hens who had never had chicken-cholera perished 
when exposed to the deadly virus, those who had undergone 
attenuated inoculations, and who afterwards received more 
than their share of the deadly virus, were affected with the 
disease in a benign form, a passing indisposition, sometimes 
n they remained perfectly well ; they had acquired 
immunity. Was not this fact worthy of being placed by the 
fide of that great fact of vaccine, over which Pasteur had so 
often pondered and meditated? 

He now felt that he might entertain the hope of obtaining, 
through artificial culture, some vaccinating-virus against the 
virulent diseases which cause great losses to agriculture in the 
breeding of domestic animals, and, beyond that, the greater 
hope of preserving humanity from those contagious diseases 
which continually decimate it. This invincible hope led him 
to wish that he might live long enough to accomplish some new 
discoveries and to see his followers 6tep into the road he had 
marked out. 

Strong in his experimental method which enabled him to 
produce proofs and thus to demonstrate the truth ; able to 
establish the connection between a virulent and a microbian 
disease; finally, ready to reproduce by culture, in b 
degrees of attenuation, a veritable vaccine, could he not 1. 
force those of his opponents who were acting in good faith to 
acknowledge the evidence of facts? Could he not carry all 
attentive minds with him into the great movement which was 
about to replace old ideas by new and precise notions, more 
and more accessible? 

Pasteur enjoyed days of incomparable happiness during that 
period of enthusiasm, joys of the mind in its full power, joys of 
the heart in all its expansion ; for good was being done. He 
felt that nothing could arrest the course of his doctrine, of 
which he said—" The breath of Truth is carrying it towards 
the fruitful fields of the fuku He had that intuition which 

makes a great poet of a great scientist. The innumerable i(i> 
surging through his mind were like so many bees all trying to 
iBsue from the hive at the same time. So many plans and pre- 
conceived ideas only stimulated him to further researches ; but, 

1880—1882 79 

when he was once started on a road, he distrusted each step 
and only progressed in the train of precise, clear and irrefutable 

A paper of his on the plague, dated April, 1880, illustrates 
his train of thought. The preceding year the Academy of 
Medicine had appointed a commission composed of eight 
members, to draw up a programme of research relative to the 
plague. The scourge had appeared in a village situated on the 
right bank of the Volga, in the district of Astrakhan. There 
had been one isolated case at first, followed ten days later by 
another death ; the dread disease had then invaded and devoured 
the whole village, going from house to house like an inextin- 
guishable fire ; 370 deaths had occurred in a population of 1,372 
inhabitants ; thirty or forty people died every day. In one of 
those sinister moments when men forget everything in their 
desire to live, parents and relations had abandoned their sick 
and dying among the unburied dead, with 20° C. of frost ! ! 
The neighbouring villages were contaminated; but, thanks to 
the Russian authorities, who had established a strict sanitary 
cordon, the evil was successfully localized. Some doctors, 
meeting in Vienna, declared that that plague was no other 
than the Black Death of the fourteenth century, which had de- 
populated Europe. The old pictures and sculptures of the 
time, which represent Death pressing into his lugubrious gang 
children and old men, beggars and emperors, bear witness to 
the formidable ravages of such a scourge. In France, since 
the epidemic at Marseilles in 1720, it seemed as if the plague 
were but a memory, a distant nightmare, almost a horrible 
fairy tale. Dr. Eochard, in a report to the Academie do 
Medecine, recalled how the contagion had burst out in May, 
1720; a ship, having lost six men from the plague on its 
journey, had entered Marseilles harbour. The plague, after 
an insidious first phase, had raged in all its fury in July. 

" Since the plague is a disease," wrote Pasteur (whose paper 
was a sort of programme of studies) , "the cause of which is 
absolutely unknown, it is not illogical to suppose that it too is 
perhaps produced by a special microbe. All experimental 
research must be guided by some preconceived ideas, and it 
would probably be very useful to tackle the study of that disease 
with the belief that it is due to a parasite. 

1 The most decisive of all the proofs which can be invoked 
in favour of the possible correlation between a determined 
affection and the presence of a micro-organism, is that afforded 


by the method of cultures of organisms in a Btate of purity ; a 
method by which I have solved, within the last twenty-two 
bi< f difficulties relative to fermentations properly 
so called; notably the important question, much debated for- 
merly, of the correlation which exists between those fermenta- 
tions and their particular ferments." 

He then pointed out that if. after gathering either blood or 
pus immediately before or immediately after the death of a 
plague patient, one could succeed in discovering the micro- 
organism, and then in finding for that microbe an appropriate 
culture medium, it would be advisable to inoculate with it ani- 
mals of various kinds, perhaps monkeys for preference, and to 
look for the lesions capable of establishing relations from cause 
to < fleet between that organism and the disease in mankind. 

He did not hide from himself the great difficulties to be met 
with in experimenting; for, after discovering and isolating the 
riism, there is nothing to indicate a priori to the experi- 
mentalist an appropriate culture medium. Liquids which suit 
some microbes admirably are absolutely unsuitable to oth- 
Cake, for instance, the microbe of chicken-cholera, which will 
not develop in beer yeast ; a hasty experimentalist might con- 
clude that the chicken -cholera is not produced by a micro- 
organism, and that it is a spontaneous disease with unknown 
immediate causes. 'The fallacy would be a fatal one." said 

iteur, "for in another medium, say, for instance, in 
cken-broth, there would be a virulent culture." 

Tn these researches on the plagui . then, various mediums 
should be tried ; also the char <■!, r. either aerobic or anal 
of the microbe should be present to the mind. 

' The sterility of a culture liquid may come from the presence 
of air and not from its own constitution ; the s- ptie vibrio, for 
instance, is killed by oxygen in air. From this last circum- 
stance it is plain that culture must be made not only in the 
presence of air but also in a vacuum or in the presei 
of pure oic acid gas. In the latter cast . imme- 

diately after sowing the blood or humour to be tested, a 
■uum must b le in the tubes, they must be sealed bv 

means of a lamp, and left in a suitable temperature, usually 

: ' Thus he | : • imarks for 

the guidance of scientific research on the i nology of the plague. 

siring as Pasteur did thai the public in general should take 

1880—1882 81 

an interest in laboratory research, he sent to his friend Nisard 
the number of the Bulletin of the Academie de Medecine 
which contained a first communication on chicken-cholera, and 
also his paper on the plague. 

"Read them if you have time," he wrote (May 3, 1880) : 
" they may interest you, and there should be no blanks in your, 
education. They will be followed by others. 

' To-day at the Institute, and to-morrow at the Academie de 
Medecine, I shall give a new lecture. 

1 ' Do repeat to me every criticism you hear ; I much prefer 
them to praise, barren unless encouragement is wanted, which 
is certainly not my case ; I have a lasting provision of faith and 

Nisard answered on May 7 : " My very dear friend, I am 
almost dazed with the effort made by my ignorance to follow 
your ideas, and dazzled with the beauty of your discoveries on 
the principal point, and the number of secondary discoveries 
enumerated in your marvellous paper. You are right not to 
care for barren praise ; but you would wrong those who love 
you if you found no pleasure in being praised by them when 
they have no other means of acknowledging your notes. 

' I am reading the notice on chicken-cholera for the second 
time, and I observe that the writer is following the discoverer, 
and that your language becomes elevated, supple and coloured, 
in order to express the various aspects of the subject. 

" It gives me pleasure to see the daily growth of your fame, 
and 1 am indeed proud of enjpying your friendship." 

Amidst his researches on a vaccine for chicken-cholera, the 
etiology of splenic fever was unceasingly preoccupying Pasteur. 
Did the splenic germs return to the surface of the soil, and 
how? One day, in one of his habitual excursions with Messrs. 
Roux and Chamberland to the farm of St. Germain, near 
Chartres, he suddenly perceived an answer to that enigma. 
In a field recently harvested, he noticed a place where the 
colour of the soil differed a little from the neighbouring earth. 
He questioned M. Maunoury, the proprietor of the farm, who 
answered that sheep dead of anthrax had been buried there the 
preceding year. Pasteur drew nearer, and was interested by 
the mass of little earth cylinders, those little twists which earth- 
worms deposit on the ground. Might that be, he wondered, 
the explanation of the origin of the germs which reappear on 
the surface? Might not the worms, returning from their sub- 


terra nenn journeys in the immediate neighbourhood of graves, 
bring back with them splenic spores, and thus scatter the germs 
so exhumed? That would again be a singular revelation, un- 
expected but quite simple, due to the germ theory. He wasted 
no time in dreaming of the possibilities opened by that precon- 
ceived idea, but, with lus usual impatience to get at the truth, 
decided to proceed to experiment. 

On his return to Paris Pasteur spoke to Bouley of this pos- 
sible part of germ carriers played by earthworms, and Bouley 
caused some to be gathered which had appeared on the surface 
of pita where animals dead of splenic fever had been buried 
soni' years before. Villemin and Davaine were invited as well 
as Bouley to come to the laboratory and see the bodies of these 
worms opened ; anthrax spores were found in the earth cylinders 
which filled their intestinal tube. 

At the time when Pasteur revealed this pathogenic action 
of the earthworm, Darwin, in his last book, was expounding 
their share in agriculture. He too, with his deep attention and 
force of method, able to discover the hidden importance of what 
seemed of little account to second-rate minds, had seen how 
earthworms open their tunnels, and how, by turning over the 
soil, and by bringing so many particles up to the surface by 
tlnir " castings," they ventilate and drain the soil, and, by 
their incessant and continuous work, render great bi - to 

agriculture. These excellent labourers are redoubtable grave- 
diggers ; each of those two tasks, the one beneficent and the 
other full of perils, was brought to light by Pasteur and Darwin, 
unknowingly to each other. 

ir had gathered earth from the pits where splenic cows 
had been buried in July, 1878, in the Jura. " At three different 
tunes within those two years," he said to the Academie des 
Sciences and to the Academie de Medecine in July, 1880, " the 
surface soil of those same pits has pn sented charbon spores." 
This fact had been continued by recent experiments on Ihl 
soil of the Beaace farm; particles of earth from other parts 
of the field had no power of provoking splenic fever. 

Pasteur, going on to practical advice, showed how grazing 
animals might find in certain places the germs of charbon, 
freed by the loosening by rain of the little castings of earth- 
worms. Animals are wont to choose the surface of the pits, 
where the soil, being richer in humus, produces thicker growth, 

1880—1882 83 

and in so doing risk their lives, for they become infected, some- 
what in the same manner as in the experiments when their 
forage was poisoned with a few drops of splenic culture liquid. 
Septic germs are brought to the surface of the soil in the same 

'Animals," said Pasteur, "should never be buried in 
fields intended for pasture or the growing of hay. When- 
ever it is possible, burying-grounds should be chosen in sandy 
or chalky soils, poor, dry, and unsuitable to the life of earth- 

Pasteur, like a general with only two aides de camp, was 
obliged to direct the efforts of Messrs. Chamberland and Eoux 
simultaneously in different parts of France. Sometimes facts 
had to be checked which had been over-hastily announced by 
rash experimentalists. Thus M. Eoux went, towards the end 
of the month of July, to an isolated property near Nancy, called 
Bois le Due Farm, to ascertain whether the successive deaths 
of nineteen head of cattle were really, as affirmed, due to 
splenic fever. The water of this pasture was alleged to be 
contaminated ; the absolute isolation of the herd seemed to 
exclude all idea of contagion. After collecting water and 
earth from various points on the estate M. Eoux had returned 
to the laboratory with his tubes and pipets. He was much 
inclined to believe that there had been septicemia and not 
splenic fever. 

M. Chamberland was at Savagna, near Lons-le-Saulnier, 
where, in order to experiment on the contamination of the sur- 
face of pits, he had had a little enclosure traced out and 
surrounded by an open paling in a meadow where victims of 
splenic fever had been buried two years previously. Four 
sheep were folded in this enclosure. Another similar fold, also 
enclosing four sheep, was placed a few yards above the' first 
one. This experiment was intended to occupy the vacation, 
and Pasteur meant to watch it from Arbois. 

A great sorrow awaited him there. " I have just had the 
misfortune of losing my sister," he wrote to Nisard at the 
beginning of August, " to see whom (as also my parents' and 
children's graves) I returned yearly to Arbois. Within forty- 
eight hours I witnessed life, sickness, death and burial; such 
rapidity is terrifying. I deeply loved my sister, who, in diffi- 
cult times, when modest ease even did not reign in our home, 
carried the heavy burden of the day and devoted herself to the 



little ones of whom I was one. I am now the only survivor of 
my paternal and maternal families. " 

In the first days of August, Toussaint, the young professor 
of the Toulouse Veterinary School, declared that he had suc- 
ceeded in vaccinating sheep against splenic fever. One process 
of vaccination (which consisted in collecting the blood of an 
animal affected with charbon just before or immediately after 
death, detibrinating it and then passing it through a piece of 
linen and filtering it through ten or twelve sheets of paper) had 
("•t-n unsuccessful ; the bacteridia came through it all and 
killed instead of preserving the animal. Toussaint then had 
recourse to heat to kill the bacteridia: 'I raised," he said, 
'the defibrinated blood to a heat of 55° C. for ten minutes; 
the result was complete. Five sheep inoculated with three 
cubic cent, of that blood, and afterwards with very active 
charbon blood, have not felt it in the least." However, several 
successive inoculations had to be made. 

"All ideas of holidays ruust be postponed; we must set to 
work in Jura as well as in Paris," wrote Pasteur to his assist- 
ants. Bouley, who thought that the goal was reached, did not 
hide from himself the difficulties of interpretation of the alleged 
fact. He obtained from the Minister of Agriculture permission 
to try at Alfort this so-called vaccinal liquid on twenty sht 

" Yesterday," wrote 1 a to his son-in-law on August 

13. "I went to give M. Chamberland instructions so that I 
may verify as soon as possible the Toussaint fact, which I will 
only believe when I have seen it. seen it with my own eyes. 
I am having twenty sheep bought, and I hope to be satisfied as 
to the exactitude of this really extraordinary observation in 

>dt three weeks' time. Nature may I rifted M. 

Toussaint. though ins assertions seem to attest the I nee of 
.i very interesting fact." 

Toussaint's assertion had been hasty, and Pasteur was not 
long in clearing up that point. The tempi rature of 55° C. 
prolonged for ten minutes was not sufficient to kill the h 
teridia in the blood: they were but weakened and r. I in 

ir development: even after fifteen minutes' exposure to 
the heat, there was but a Dumbness of th ridium. Whilst 

ih« were being pursued in the Jura and in the 

laboratory of the PL cole Normale. the Alfort sheep were giving 
Boulev gn si anxi< ty. One died of charbon one day after 
inoculation, three two days later. The others were so ill that 

1880—1882 85 

M. Nocard wanted to sacrifice one in order to proceed to 
immediate necropsy ; Bouley apprehended a complete disaster. 
But the sixteen remaining sheep recovered gradually and 
became ready for the counter test of charbon inoculation. 

Whilst Pasteur was noting the decisive points, he heard 
from Bouley and from Roux at the same time, that Toussaint 
now obtained his vaccinal liquid, no longer by the action of 
heat, but by the measured action of carbolic acid on splenic 
fever blood. The interpretation by weakening remained the 

"What ought we to conclude from that result?" wrote 
Bouley to Pasteur ' It is evident that Toussaint does not 
vaccinate as he thought, with a liquid destitute of bacteridia, 
since he gives charbon with that liquid ; but that he uses a 
liquid in which the power of the bacteridium is reduced by 
the diminished number and the attenuated activity. His vac- 
cine must then only be charbon liquid of which the intensity 
of action may be weakened to the point of not being mortal to 
a certain number of susceptible animals receiving it. But it 
may be a most treacherous vaccine, in that it might be capable 
of recuperating its power with time. The Alfort experiment 
makes it probable that the vaccine tested at Toulouse and found 
to be harmless, had acquired in the lapse of twelve days before 
it was tried at Alfort, a greater intensity, because the bac- 
teridium, numbed for a time by carbolic acid, had had time to 
awaken and to swarm, in spite of the acid." 

Whilst Toussaint had gone to Rheims (where sat the French 
Association for the Advancement of Science) to state that it 
was not, as he had announced, the liquid which placed the 
animal into conditions of relative immunity and to epitomize 
Bouley 's interpretation, to wit, that it was a bearable charbon 
which he had inoculated, Pasteur wrote rather a severe note on 
the subject. His insisting on scrupulous accuracy in experi- 
ment sometimes made him a little hard ; though the process was 
unreliable and the explanation inexact, Toussaint at least had 
the merit of having noted a condition of transitory attenuation 
in the bacteridium. Bouley begged Pasteur to postpone his 
communication out of consideration for Toussaint 

One of the sheep folded over splenic-fever pits had died on 
August 25, its body, full of bacteridia, proving once more the 
error of those who believed" in the spontaneity of transmissible 
diseases. Pasteur informed J. B. Dumas of this, and at the 

x 2 


same time expressed his opinion on the Toussaint fact. This 
[i tter was read at the Academie des Sciences. 

" Allow me, before I finish, to tell you another secret. I 
have hastened, again with the assistance of Messrs. Chamber- 
land and Rous, to verify the extraordinary facts recently 
announced to the Academy by M. Toussaint, professor at the 
Toulouse Veterinary School. 

" After numerous experiments leaving no room for doubt, 
I can assure you that M. Toussaint's interpretations should 
be gone over again. Neither do I agree with M. Toussaint 
on the identity which he affirms as existing between acute 
septicaemia and chicken-cholera ; those two diseases differ 

Bouley was touched by this temperate language after all 
the verifying experiments made at the Ecole Normale and 
in the Jura. When relating the Alfort incidents, and while 
expressing a hope that some vaccination against anthrax 
would shortly be discovered, he revealed that Pasteur had 
had "the delicacy of abstaining from a detailed criticism, 
so as to leave M. Toussaint the care of checking his own 

The struggle against virulent diseases was becoming more 
and more the capital question for Pasteur. He constantly 
recurred to the subject, not only in the laboratory, but in his 
home conversations, for he associated his family with all the 
preoccupations of his scientific lit-'. Now that the i of 

air appeared as a modifying influence on the development of a 
microbe in the body of animals, it seemed possible that there 
might be a general law applicable to every virus! What a 
benefit it would be if the vaccine of every virulent disease could 
thus be discovered ! And in his thirst for research, considering 
that the scientific history of chicken-cholera was more advanced 
than that of variolic and vaccinal affections — the great fact of 
vaccination remaining isolated and unexplained — he hastened 
on his return to Paris (September, 1880) to press physicians 
on this special point — the relations between small-pox and 
vaccine. " From the point of view of physiological experi- 
mentation," he said, "the identity of the variola virus with 
the vaccine virus has never been demonstrated. '* When Jules 
Guerin — a born tighter, still desirous at the age of eighty to 
measure himself successfully with Pasteur — declared that 
" human vaccine is the product of animal variola (cow pox and 

1880—1882 87 

horse pox) inoculated into man and humanised by its successive 
transmissions on man," Pasteur answered ironically that he 
might as well say, " Vaccine is— vaccine." 

Those who were accustomed to speak to Pasteur with absolute 
sincerity advised him not to let himself be dragged further into 
those discussions when his adversaries, taking words for ideas, 
drowned the debate in a flood of phrases. Of what good 
were such debates to science, since those who took the first 
place among veterinary surgeons, physicians and surgeons, 
loudly acknowledged the debt which science owned to Pasteur? 
Why be surprised that certain minds, deeply disturbed in their 
habits, their principles, their influence, should feel some diffi- 
culty, some anger even in abandoning their ideas? If it is 
painful to tenants to leave a house in which they have spent 
their youth, what must it be to break with one's whole 
education ? 

Pasteur, who allowed himself thus to be told that he lacked 
philosophical serenity, acknowledged this good advice with an 
affectionate smile. He promised to be calm ; but when once in 
the room, his adversaries' attacks, their prejudices and 
insinuations, enervated and irritated him. All his promises 
were forgotten. 

' To pretend to express the relation between human variola 
and vaccine by speaking but of vaccine and its relations with 
cow pox and horse pox, without even pronouncing the word 
small-pox, is mere equivocation, done on purpose to avoid the 
real point of the debate." Becoming excited by Guerin's 
antagonism, Pasteur turned some of Guerin's operating pro- 
cesses into ridicule with such effect that Guerin started from 
his place and rushed at him. The fiery octogenarian was 
stopped by Baron Larrey ; the sitting was suspended in con- 
fusion. The following day, Guerin sent two seconds to ask for 
reparation by arms from Pasteur. Pasteur referred them to 
M. Beclard, Permanent Secretary to the Academie de Medicine, 
and M. Bergeron, its Annual Secretary, who were jointly 
responsible for the Official Bulletin of the Academy. " I am 
ready," said Pasteur, "having no right to act otherwise, to 
modify whatever the editors may consider as going beyond the 
rights of criticism and legitimate defence." 

In deference to the opinion of Messrs. Beclard and Bergeron, 
Pasteur consented to terminate the quarrel by writing to the 
chairman of the Academy that he had no intention of offending 


a colleague, and that in all discussions of that kind, he never 
thought of anything but to defend the exactitude of his own 

The Journal de la Medecine et de la Chimic, edited by M. 
Lucas-Championniere, said a propos of this very reasonable 
letter — " We, for our part, admire the meekness of M. Pasteur, 
who is so often described as combative and ever on the war- 
path. Here we have a scientist, who now and then makes 
short, substantial and extremely interesting communications. 
He is not a medical man, and yet, guided by his genius, he 
•opens new paths across the most arduous studies of medical 
"science. Instead of being offered the tribute of attention and 
admiration which he deserves, he meets with a raging opposi- 
tion from some quarrelsome individuals, ever inclined to con- 
tradict after listening as little as possible. If he makes use of 
a scientific expression not understood by everybody, or if he 
uses a medical expression slightly incorrectly, then rises before 
him the spectre of endless speeches, intended to prove to him 
that all was for the best in medical science before it was assisted 
by the precise studies and resources of chemistry and experi- 
mentation. . . . Indeed, M. Pasteur's expression of equivo- 
cation seemed to us moderate ! " 

Hon many such futile incidents, such vain quarrels, traverse 
the life of a great man 1 Later on, we only see glory, 
apotheosis, and the statues in public places; the demi-gods 
Seemed to have marched in triumph towards a grateful pos- 
terity. But how many obstacles and oppositions are there to 
r. tard the progress of a free mind desirous of bringing his 
task to a successful conclusion and incited by the fruitful 
thought of Death, ever present to spirits preoccupied with 
interests of a superior order? Pasteur looked upon himself 
as merely a passing guest of those homes of intellect which 
he wished to enlarge and fortify for those who would come 
aftei aim. 

Confronted with the hostility, indifference anil scepticism 
which he found in the members of the Medical Academy, ho 
once app a led to the students who sat on the seats open to 
the public. 

' Young men. yon who sit on those benches, and who are 
perhaps the hope of the medical future of the country, do not 
corns here to aeek the excitement of polemics, but come aud 

learn Method." 

1880—1882 89 

His method, as opposed to vague conceptions and a priori 
speculations, went on fortifying itself day by day. Artificial 
attenuation, that is, virus modified by the oxygen of air, which 
weakens and abates virulence ; vaccination by the attenuated 
virus — those two immense steps in advance were announced by 
Pasteur at the end of 1880. But would the same process apply 
to the microbe of charbon? That was a great problem. The 
vaccine of chicken-cholera was easy to obtain ; by leaving pure 
cultures to themselves for a time in contact with air, they soon 
lost their virulence. But the spores of charbon, very indiffer- 
ent to atmospheric air, preserved an indefinitely prolonged 
virulence. After eight, ten or twelve years, spores found in 
the graves of victims of splenic fever were still in full virulent 
activity. It was therefore necessary to turn the difficulty by 
a culture process which would act on the filament-shaped bac- 
teridium before the formation of spores. What may now be 
explained in a few words demanded long weeks of trials, tests 
and counter tests. 

In neutralized chicken broth, the bacteridium can no longer 
be cultivated at a temperature of 45° C. ; it can still be culti- 
vated easily at a temperature of 42° C. or 43° C, but the spores 
do not develop. 

"At that extreme temperature," explains M. Chamberland, 
' the bacteridia yet live and reproduce themselves, but they 
never give any germs. Thenceforth, when trying the viru- 
lence of the phials after six, eight, ten or fifteen days, we have 
found exactly the same phenomena as for chicken-cholera. 
After eight days, for instance, our culture, which originally 
killed ten sheep out of ten, only kills four or five ; after ten or 
twelve days it does not kill any ; it merely communicates to 
animals a benignant malady which preserves them from the 
deadly form. 

' A remarkable thing is that the bacteridia whose virulence 
has been attenuated may afterwards be cultivated in a tempera- 
ture of 30° C. to 35° C, at which temperature they give germs 
presenting the same virulence as the filaments which formed 

Bouley, who was a witness of all these facts, said, in other 
words, that " if that attenuated and degenerated bacteridium 
is translated to a culture medium in a lower temperature, fav- 
ourable to its activity, it becomes once again apt to produce 
spores. But those spores born of weakened bacteridia, will 


only produce bacteridia likewise weakened in their swarming 

Thus is obtained and enclosed in inalterable spores a vaccine 
ready to be sent to every part of the world to preserve animals 
by vaccination against splenic fever. 

On the day when he became sure of this discovery, Pasteur, 
returning to his rooms from his laboratory, said to his family, 
with a deep emotion — " Nothing would have consoled me if this 
discovery, which my collaborators and I have made, had not 
been a French discovery." 

He desired to wait a little longer before proclaiming it. Yet 
the cause of the evil was revealed, the mode of propagation 
indicated, prophylaxis made easy; surely, enough had been 
achieved to move attentive minds to enthusiasm and to deserve 
the gratitude of sheep owners ! 

So thought the Society of French Agricultors, when it 
decided, on February 21, 1881, to offer to Pasteur a medal of 
honour. J. B. Dumas, detained at the Academie des Sciences, 
was unable to attend the meeting. He wrote to Bouley, who 
had been requested to enumerate Pasteur's principal discoveries 
at that large meeting — " I had desired to make public by my 
presence my heartfelt concurrence in your admiration for him 
who will never be honoured to the full measure of his merits, of 
his services and of his passionate devotion to truth and to our 

On the following Monday, Bouley said to Dumas, as they 
were walking to the Academie des Scieno 'Your letter 
assures me of a small share of immortality." 

' See," answered Dumas, pointing to Pasteur, who was pre- 
ceding them, "there is he who will had us both to 

On that Monday, February 28, Pasteur made his celebrated 
communication on the vaccine of splenic fever and the whole 
graduated BCale of virulence. The secret of those returns to 
virulence lay - ntitvlv in some successive cultures through the 
body of certain animals. If a weakened bacteridium was 
inoculated into a guinea-pig a few days old it was harmless; 
but it killed a new-born guinea-pig. 

"If we th. D go from one new-born guinea-pig to another," 
siid Pasteur, "by inoculation of the blood of the first to the 
second, from the second to a third, and so on, the virulence of 
the bacteridium — that is : its adaptability to development 

1880—1882 91 

within the economy — becomes gradually strengthened. It 
becomes by degrees able to kill guinea-pigs three or four days 
old, then a week, a month, some years old, then sheep them- 
selves ; the bacteridium has returned to its original virulence. 
We may affirm, without hesitation, though we have not had the 
opportunity of testing the fact, that it would be capable of 
killing cows and horses ; and it preserves that virulence inde- 
finitely if nothing is done to attenuate it again. 

"As to the microbe of chicken-cholera, when it has lost its 
power of action on hens, its virulence may be restored to it by 
applying it to small birds such as sparrows or canaries, which 
it kills immediately. Then by successive passages through the 
bodies of those animals, it gradually assumes again a virulence 
capable of manifesting itself anew on adult hens. 

' Need I add, that, during that return to virulence, by the 
way, virus-vaccines can be prepared at every degree of virulence 
for the bacillus anthracis and for the chicken-cholera microbe. 

"This question of the return to virulence is of the greatest 
interest for the etiology of contagious diseases." 

Since charbon does not recur, said Pasteur in the course of 
that communication, each of the charbon microbes attenuated 
in the laboratory constitutes a vaccine for the superior microbe. 
' What therefore is easier than to find in those successive virus, 
virus capable of giving splenic fever to sheep, cows and horses, 
without making them perish, and assuring them of ulterior 
immunity from the deadly disease? We have practised that 
operation on sheep with the greatest success. When the season 
comes for sheep-folding in the Beauce, we will try to apply it 
on a large scale." 

The means of doing this were given to Pasteur before long ; 
assistance was offered to him by various people for various 
reasons ; some desired to see a brilliant demonstration of the 
truth ; others whispered their hopes of a signal failure. The 
promoter of one very large experiment was a Melun veterinary 
surgeon, M. Eossignol. 

In the Veterinary Press, of which M. Eossignol was one 
of the editors, an article by him might have been read on the 
31st January, 1881, less than a month before that great dis- 
covery on charbon vaccine, wherein he expressed himself as 
follows : ' Will you have some microbe ? There is some 
everywhere. Microbiolatry is the fashion, it reigns undis- 
puted ; it is a doctrine which must not even be discussed, 


especially when its Pontiff, the learned Iff. Pasteur, has 

pronounced the sacramental words, / have spoken. The 
microbe alone is and shall be the characteristic of a disease ; 
that is understood and settled ; henceforth the germ theory 
must have precedence of pure clinics ; the Microbe alone is true, 
and P isteor is its prophet." 

At the end of March, M. Rossignol h.-gan a campaign, 
1> jL'ing for subscriptions, pointing out how much the cultiva- 
tors of the Brie — whose cattle suffered almost as much as that 
of the Beauce — were interested in the question. The dis- 
covery, if it were genuine, should not remain confined to the 
I sole Normals laboratory, or monopolized by the privileged 
public of the Academic des Sciences, who had no use for it. 
M. Rossignol soon collected about 100 subscribers. Did he 
believe that Pasteur and his little phials would come to a 
hopeless fiasco in a farmyard before a public of old prac- 
titioners who had always been powerless in the presence of 
splenic fever? Microbes were a subject for ceaseless joking; 
people had hilarious visions of the veterinary profession con- 
fined some twenty years hence in a model laboratory assiduously 
cultivating numberless races, sub-races, varieties and sub- 
varieties of microbes. 

It is probable that, if light comes from above, a good many 
practitioners would not have been sorry to see a strong wind 
from below putting out Pasteur's light. 

M. Rossignol succeeded in interesting every one in this 
undertaking. When the project was placed before the Melun 
Agricultural Society on the 2nd April, they hastened to approve 
of it and to accord their patronage. 

The chairman, Baron de la Rorhette, was requested to 
approach Pasteur and to invite him to organize public experi- 
ments on the preventive vaccination of charboo in the districts 
of Melon, Fontaineblean and Provins. 

"The Doise which those experiments will necessarily eause," 
wrote M. Rossignol, 'will strike every mind and convince 
those who may still be doubting : the evidence of facts will have 
the result of ending all uncertainty." 

Baron de Is Etochette was a typical old French gentleman; 
his whole person was an ideal of old-time distinction and 
. onrtesy. Well ap t<» date in all agricultural progress, and 
justly priding himself, with the ease of B great landowner, th it 
he made of agriculture an art and a science, he could speak in 

1880—1882 93 

any surroundings with knowledge of his subject and a winning 
grace of manner. When he entered the laboratory, he was at 
once charmed by the simplicity of the scientist, who hastened 
to accept the proposal of an extensive experiment. 

At the end of April, Pasteur wrote out the programme which 
was to be followed near Melun at the farm of Pouilly le Fort. 
M. Rossignol had a number of copies of that programme 
printed, and distributed them, not only throughout the Depart- 
ment of Seine et Marne, but in the whole agricultural world. 
This programme was so decidedly affirmative that some one said 
to Pasteur, with a little anxiety : " You remember what 
Marshal Gouyion St. Cyr said of Napoleon, that ' he liked 
hazardous games with a character of grandeur and audacity.' 
It was neck or nothing with him ; you are going on in the same 
way! " 

'Yes," answered Pasteur, who meant to compel a victory. 

And as his collaborators, to whom he had just read the precise 
and strict arrangements he had made, themselves felt a little 
nervous, he said to them, " What has succeeded in the labora- 
tory on fourteen sheep will succeed just as well at Melun on 

This programme left him no retreat. The Melun Agricul- 
tural Society put sixty sheep at Pasteur's disposal ; twenty-five 
were to be vaccinated by two inoculations, at twelve or fifteen 
days' interval, with some attenuated charbon virus. Some 
days later those twenty-five and also twenty-five others would 
be inoculated with some very virulent charbon culture. 

' The twenty-five unvaccinated sheep will all perish," wrote 
Pasteur, 'the twenty-five vaccinated ones will survive." 
They would afterwards be compared with the ten sheep which 
had undergone no treatment at all. It would thus be seen that 
vaccination did not prevent sheep from returning to their 
normal state of health after a certain time. 

Then came other prescriptions, for instance, the burying of 
the dead sheep in distinct graves, near each other and enclosed 
within a paling. 

" In May, 1882," added Pasteur, " twenty new sheep, that 
is, sheep never before used for experimentation, will be shut 
within that paling." 

And he predicted that the following year, 1882, out of those 
twenty-five sheep fed on the grass of that little enclosure or en 
forage deposited there, several would become infected by the - 


charbon germs brought to the surface by earthworms, and that 
they would die of splenic fever. Finally, twenty-five other 
sheep might be folded in a neighbouring spot, where no charbon 
victims had ever been buried, and under these conditions none 
would contract the disease. 

M. de la Rochette having expressed a desire that cows should 
be included in the programme, Pasteur answered that he was 
willing to try that new experiment, though his tests on vaccine 
for cows were not as advanced as those on sheep vaccine. 
Perhaps, he said, the results may not be as positive, though he 
thought they probably would be. He was offered ten cows ; 
six were to be vaccinated and four not vaccinated. The experi- 
ments were to begin on the Thursday, 5th May, and would in 
all likelihood terminate about the first fortnight in June. 

At the time when M. Eossignol declared that all was ready 
for the fixed time, an editor's notice in the Veterinary Press 
said that the laboratory experiments were about to be repeated 
in campo, and that Pasteur could thus "demonstrate that he 
had not been mistaken w 7 hen he affirmed before the astonished 
Academy that he had discovered the vaccine of splenic fever. 
a preventative to one of the most terrible diseases with which 
animals and even men could be attacked." This notice ended 
thus, with an unexpected classical reminiscence : ' These 
experiments are solemn ones, and they will become memorable 
if. as M. Pasteur asserts, with such confidence, they confirm 
all those he has already instituted. We ardently wish that M. 
Pasteur may succeed and remain the victor in a tournament 
which has now lasted long enough. If he succeeds, he will 
have endowed his country with a great benefit, and his adver- 

ries should, as in the days of antiquity, wreathe their brows 
with laurel leaves and prepare to follow, chained and prostrate, 
the chariot of the immortal Victor. But he must succeed : 
such is the price of triumph. L«t M. Pasteur not forget that 
the Tarpeian Rock is near the Capitol." 

On May 5 a numerous crowd arriving from Melun station or 
from the Little station of Cesson, was seen moving towards the 
yard of rouilly le Fort farm ; it looked like a mobilisation of 
ConsetUert Giniraux, agricultors, physicians, apothecaries, and 
especially veterinary surgeons. Most of these last were full of 
scepticism — as was remarked by M. Thierry, who represented 
the Veterinary Society of the Yonne, and one of his colleagues, 
M. Biot, of Pont-sur- Yonne. Tin y were exchanging jokes and 



looks to the complete satisfaction of Pasteur's adversaries. 
They were looking forward to the last and most virulent 

Pasteur, assisted not only by Messrs. Chamberland and 
Roux, but also by a third pupil of the name of Thuillier, pro- 
ceeded to the arrangement of the subjects. At the last 
moment, two goats were substituted for two of the sheep. 

Vaccination candidates and unvaccinated test sheep were 
divided under a large shed. For the injection of the vaccinal 
liquid, Pravaz's little syringe was used; those who have 
experienced morphia injections know how easily the needle 
penetrates the subcutaneous tissues. Each of the twenty-five 
sheep received, on the inner surface of the right thigh" five 
drops of the bacteridian culture which Pasteur called the' first 
vaccine. Five cows and one ox substituted for the sixth cow 
were vaccinated in their turn, behind the shoulder. The ox 
and the cows were marked on the right horn, and the sheep on 
the ear. 

Pasteur was, after this, asked to give a lecture on splenic 
fever in the large hall of the Pouilly farm. Then, in clear, 
simple language, meeting every objection half-way, snowing no 
astonishment at ignorance or prejudice, knowing perfectly well 
that many were really hoping for a failure, he methodically 
described the road already travelled, and pointed to the goal he 
would reach. For nearly an hour he interested and instructed 
his mixed audience ; he made them feel the genuineness of his 
faith, and, besides his interest in the scientific problem, his 
desire to spare heavy losses to cultivators. After the lecture, 
some, better informed than others, were admiring the logical 
harmony of that career, mingling with pure science results of 
incalculable benefit to the public, an extraordinary alliance 
which gave a special moral physiognomy to this man of pro- 
digious labours. 

An appointment was made for the second inoculation In 
the interval-on May 6, 7, 8 and 9-Messrs. Chamberland and 
Roux came to Pouilly le Fort to take the temperature of the 
vaccinated animals, and found nothing abnormal. On May 17 
a second inoculation was made with a liquid which, though still 
attenuated, was more virulent than the first. If that°liquid 
had been inoculated to begin with it would have caused a mor- 
tality of 50 per 100. 

'On Tuesday, May 31," wrote Pasteur to his son-in-law, 


" the third and last inoculation will take place— this time with 

fifty sheep and ten cows. I feel great confidence — for the two 

on the 5th and the 17th, have been effected under the best 

nditions without any mortality amongst the twenty-five 
vaccinated subjects. On June 5 at latest the final result will 
be known, and should be twenty-five survivors out of twenty- 
live vaccinated, and six cows. If the success is complete, this 
will be one of the finest examples of applied science in this 

atury, consecrating one of the greatest and most fruitful 

This great experiment did not hinder other studies being 
pursued in the laboratory. The very day of the second inocula- 
tion at Pouilly le Fort, Mme. Pasteur wrote to her daughter, 
" One of the laboratory dogs seems to be sickening for hydro- 
phobia ; it seems that that would be very lucky, in view of the 
interesting experiment it would provide." 

On May 25, another letter from Mme. Pasteur shows how 
deeply each member of the family shared Pasteur's preoccupa- 
tions and hopes and was carried away with the stream of his 
ideas: "Your father has just brought great news from the 
laboratory. The new dog which was trephined and inoculated 
with hydrophobia died last night after nineteen days' incuba- 
tion only. The disease manifested itself on the fourt.-.nth <: 
and this morning the same dog was used for the trephining of a 
fresh dog, which was done by Roux with unrivalled skill. All 
this means that we shall have as many mad dogs as will be 
required for experiments, and those experiments will become 
< xtremely interesting. 

" Next month one of the master's delegates will go to the 
south of France to study the ' rouget ' of swine, which ordin- 
arily rag< s ;it this time. 

' It is much hoped that the vaccine of that disease will be 
found. " 

The trephining of that dog had much disturbed Pasteur 
He, who was described in certain anti-vivisectionist quarters 
as a laboratory executioner, bad a great horror of indicting 
Buffering on any animal. 

"He could assist without too much effort." write! M. Roux, 
" at a simple operation such as a subcutaneous inoculation, and 
even then, if the animal screamed at all. Pasteur was imme- 
diately filled with compassion, and tried to comfort and 
encourage the victim, in a way which would have seemed 

1880—1882 97 

ludicrous if it had not been touching. The thought of having a 
dog's cranium perforated was very disagreeable to him ; he very 
much wished that the experiment should take place, and yet he 
feared to see it begun. I performed it one day when he was 
out. The next day, as I was telling him that the intercranial 
inoculation had presented no difficulty, he began pitying the 
dog. ' Poor thing ! His brain is no doubt injured, he must 
be paralysed ! ' I did not answer, but went to fetch the dog, 
whom I brought into the laboratory. Pasteur was not fond of 
dogs, but when he saw this one, full of life, curiously investigat- 
ing every part of the laboratory, he showed the keenest 
pleasure, and spoke to the dog in the most affectionate manner. 
Pasteur was infinitely grateful to this dog for having borne 
trephining so well, thus lessening his scruples for future 

As the day was approaching for the last experiments at 
Pouilly le Fort, excitement was increasing in the veterinary 
world. Every chance meeting led to a discussion ; some 
prudent men said " Wait." Those that believed were still few 
in number. 

One or two days before the third and decisive inoculation, the 
veterinary surgeon of Pont-sur-Yonne, M. Biot, who was 
watching with a rare scepticism the Pouilly le Fort experi- 
ments, met Colin on the road to Maisons-Alfort. " Our con- 
versation " — M. Biot dictated the relation of this episode to 
M. Thierry, his colleague, also very sceptical and expecting the 
Tarpeian Rock — "our conversation naturally turned on 
Pasteur's experiments. Colin said : ' You must beware, for 
there are two parts in the bacteridia-culture broth : one upper 
part which is inert, and one deep part very active, in which the 
bacteridia become accumulated, having dropped to the bottom 
because of their weight. The vaccinated sheep will be inocu- 
lated with the upper part of the liquid, whilst the others will 
be inoculated with the bottom liquid, which will kill them.' 
Colin advised M. Biot to seize at the last moment the phial 
containing the virulent liquid and to shake it violently, " so as 
to produce a perfect mixture rendering the whole uniformly 

If Bouley had heard such a thing, he would have lost his 
temper, or he would have laughed heartily. A year before 
this, in a letter to M. Thierry, who not only defended but 
extolled Colin, Bouley had written : 


" Xo doubt Colin is a man of some value, and he has cleverly 

taken advantage of his position of Chief of the Anatomy depart- 

it at Alfort to accomplish some important labours. But it 

is notable that bis negative genius has ever led him to try and 

oolish really great work. He denied Davaine, Man 
Claude Bernard, now he is going for Pasteur." 
iley, to whom Colin was indebted for his situation at 
Alfort. might have added, " And he calls me his persecutor! " 
But Biot refused to believe in Colin's hostility and only credited 
him with scruples on the question of experimental physiolo. 
Colin did not doubt M. Pasteur's bona fides, M. Biot said, but 
only his aptitude to conduct experiments in anima vili. 

On May 31, every one was at the farm. M. Biot executed 
Colin's indications and shook the virulent tube with real 
veterinary energy. He did more : still acting on advice from 
Colin, who had told him that the effective virulence was in 
direct proportion to the quantity injected, he asked that a 
larger quantity of liquid than had been intended should be 
inoculated into the animals. A triple dose was given. Other 
veterinary surgeons desired that the virulent liquid should be 
inoculated alternatively into vaccinated and unvaccinated 
animals. Pasteur lent himself to these divers requests with 
impassive indifference and without seeking for their motives. 

At half-past three everything was done, and a rendezvous 
fixed for dune 2 at the same place. The proportion between 
believers and unbelievers was changing. Pasteur seemed so 
sure of his ground that many were saying " He can surely not 
be mistaken." One little group had that very morning drunk 
to a fiasco. J'.ut , whether from a sly desire to witnMS a failure. 
or from a generous wish to be present at the great scientific 
victory, every man impatiently counted the hours of the t 
following days. 

On dune i, Messrs. Chamberland and Rous went back to 
Pouilly le Fort to judge of the condition of the patiei 
Amongsl the lot of unvaccinated sheep, several were standing 
apart with drooping heads, refusing their food. A few of the 
vaccinated subjects showed an increase of temperature; one of 
them even had 40° C. (104° Fahrenheit) ; one sheep presented 
a slight osdema of which the point of inoculation was the 
centre; one lamb was lame, another manifestly feverish, but 
all, save one. had preserved then- appetite. All the unvac- 
cinated sheep were getting worse and worse. 'In all of 

1880—1882 99 

them," noted M. Eossignol, " breathlessness is at its maxi- 
mum ; the heaving of the sides is now and then inter- 
rupted by groans. If the most sick are forced to get 
up and walk, it is with great difficulty that they advance 
a few steps, their limbs being so weak and vacillating." 
Three had died by the time M. Eossignol left Pouilly le 
Fort. "Everything leads me to believe," he wrote, 
"that a great number of sheep will succumb during the 

Pasteur's anxiety was great when Messrs. Chamberland and 
Eoux returned, having noticed a rise in the temperature of 
certain vaccinated subjects. It was increased by the arrival of 
a telegram from M. Eossignol announcing that he considered 
one sheep as lost. By a sudden reaction, Pasteur, who had 
drawn up such a bold programme, leaving no margin for the 
unexpected, and who the day before seemed of an imperturbable 
tranquillity among all those sheep, the life or death of whom 
was about to decide between an immortal discovery and an 
irremediable failure, now felt himself beset with doubts and 

Bouley, who had that evening come to see his master, as 
he liked to call him, could not understand this reaction — the 
result of too much strain on the mind, said M. Eoux, whom 
it did not astonish. Pasteur's emotional nature, strangely 
allied to his righting temperament, was mastering him. " His 
faith staggered for a time," writes M. Eoux, " as if the experi- 
mental method could betray him." The night was a sleepless 

" This morning, at eight o'clock," wrote Mme. Pasteur to 
her daughter, " we were still very much excited and awaiting 
the telegram which might announce some disaster. Your father 
would not let his mind be distracted from his anxiety. At 
nine o'clock the laboratory was informed, and the telegram 
handed to me five minutes later. I had a moment's emotion, 
which made me pass through all the colours of the rainbow. 
Yesterday, a considerable rise of temperature had been noticed 
with terror in one of the sheep ; this morning that same sheep 
was well again." 

On the arrival of the telegram Pasteur's face lighted up ; his 
joy was deep, and he desired to share it immediately with his 
absent children. Before starting for Melun, he wrote them this 
letter : 


" June 2, 1881. 

" It is only Thursday, and I am already writing to you ; it is 
because a great result is now acquired. A wire from Melun 
has just announced it. On Tuesday last, 31st May, we inocu- 
lated nil the sheep, vaccinated and non-vaccinated, with very 
virulent splenic fever. It is not forty-eight hours ago. Well, 
the telegram tells me that, when we arrive at two o'clock this 
afternoon, all the non-vaccinated subjects will be dead ; eighteen 
were already dead this morning, and the others dying. As t<> 
the vaccinated ones, they are all well; the telegram ends by 
the words ' stunning success ' ; it is from the veterinary surgeon, 
M. Rossignol. 

"It is too early yet for a final judgment; the vaccinated 
sheep might yet fall ill. But when I write to you on Sunday, 
if all goes well, it may be taken for granted that they will 
henceforth preserve their good health, and that the success will 
indeed have been startling. On Tuesday, we had a foretaste 
of the final results. On Saturday and Sunday, two sheep had 
been abstracted from the lot of twenty-five vaccinated sheep, 
and two from the lot of twenty-five non-vaccinated ones, and 
inoculated with a very virulent virus. Now, when on Tuesday 
all the visitors arrived, amongst whom were M. Tisserand, M. 
Patinot, the Prefect of Seine et Marne, M. Foucher de Careil. 
Senator, etc., we found the two unvaccinated sheep dead, and 
the two others in good health. I then said to one of the 
veterinary surgeons who were present, 'Did I not read in a 
newspaper, signed by you, a propos of the virulant little 
organism of saliva, " There ! one more microbe ; when there 
100 we shall make a cross"?' ' It is true,' he immediately 
answered, honestly. 'But I am a converted and repentant 
sinner.' ' Well,' 1 answered, ' allow me to remind you of the 

irdfl of the Gospel : Joy shall be in heaven over one sinner 
that repenteth, more than over ninety and nine just persons 
which need no repentance.' Another veterinary surgeon who 
was present said, ' 1 will bring you another, M. Colin.' ' You 
are mistaken,' I replied ' M. Colin contradicts for the Bake 
of contradict ing. and does not believe because he will not 
believe. You would have to cure a case of neurosis, and you 
i-annot do that ! ' Joy reigns in the laboratory and in the house. 
Rejoice, my dear children." 

When Pasteur arrived, si two o'clock in the afternoon, at 
the farmyard of Pouilly le Fort, accompanied by his young 

1880—1882 101 

collaborators, a murmur of applause arose, which soon became 
loud acclamation, bursting from all lips. Delegates from the 
Agricultural Society of Melun, from medical societies, 
veterinary societies, from the Central Council of Hygiene of 
Seine et Marne, journalists, small farmers who had been divided 
in their minds by laudatory or injurious newspaper articles — 
all were there. The carcases of twenty-two un vaccinated sheep 
were lying side by side ; two others were breathing their last ; 
the last survivors of the sacrificed lot showed all the 
characteristic symptoms of splenic fever. All the vaccinated 
sheep were in perfect health. 

Bouley's happy face reflected the feelings which were so 
characteristic of his attractive personality : enthusiasm for a 
great cause, devotion to a great man. M. Eossignol, in one of 
those loyal impulses which honour human nature, disowned 
with perfect sincerity his first hasty judgment ; Bouley con- 
gratulated him. He himself, many years before, had allowed 
himself to judge too hastily, he said, of certain experiments of 
Davaine's, of which the results then appeared impossible. 
After having witnessed these experiments, Bouley had thought 
it a duty to proclaim his error at the Academie de Medecine, 
and to render a public homage to Davaine. " That, I think," 
he said, "is the line of conduct which should always be 
observed ; we honour ourselves by acknowledging our mistakes 
and by rendering justice to neglected merit." 

No success had ever been greater than Fasteur's. Tht; 
veterinary surgeons, until then the most incredulous, now 
convinced, desired to become the apostles of his doctrine. 
M. Biot spoke of nothing less than of being himself 
vaccinated and afterwards inoculated with the most active 
virus. Colin's absence was much regretted. Pasteur was 
not yet satisfied. " We must wait until the 5th of June," 
he said, "for the experiment to be complete, and the proof 

M. Eossignol and M. Biot proceeded on the spot to the 
necropsy of two of the dead sheep. An abundance of bac- 
teridia was very clearly seen in the blood through the 

Pasteur was accompanied back to the station by an enthu- 
siastic crowd, saluting him — with a luxury of epithets con- 
trasting with former ironies — as the immortal author of the 
magnificent discovery of splenic fever vaccination, and it was 

s 2 


d.-cided that the farm of Pouilly le Fort would henceforth bear 
the name of Clos Pasteur. 

The one remaining unvaccinated sheep died that same night . 
Amonj vaccinated lot one ewe alone caused some anxi> 

gnant, and died on the 4th of June, but from an 
accident due to her condition, and not from the consequen 
of the inoculation, as was proved by a post-mortem examination. 

Amongst the cattle, those which had been vaccinated showed 
no sign whatever of any disturbance; the others preserr 
enormous a demata. 

Pasteur wrote to his daughter : " Success is definitely con- 
firmed ; the vaccinated animals are keeping perfectly well, the 
• t is complete. On Wednesday a report of the facts and 

raits will be drawn up which I shall communicate to the 
Academie des Sciences on Monday, and on Tuesday to the 
Academie de M^decine." 

And, that same day, he addressed a joyful telegram to Bou 
who, in his quality of General Inspector of Veterinary Schools, 
had been obliged to go to Lyons. Bouley answered by the 
following lett 

' Lyons, June 5, 1881. Dearest Master, your triumph has 
t.lled me with joy. Though the days are long past now when 
faith in you was still somewhat hesitating, not having suf- 
ficiently impregnated my mind with your spirit, as long as the 
event — which has just been realized in a manner so rigorously 
in conformity with your predictions — was still in the future, I 
could not keep myself from feeling a certain anxiety, of which 
i were yourself the cause, since I had seen you also a prey 
to it, like all inventors on the eve of the day which reveals 
•y. At last your telegram, for which I pining, 

has come to tell me that the world has found you faithful to all 
your promifl ss, and that you have inscribed one mo A date 

in the annals of Scu nee, and particularly in those of Medicine, 
for which you have opened a new . 

"I feel the j it joy at your triumph ; in the first place, 

for you, who are ring the reward of your noble 

efforts in the pursuit of Truth: and —shall I tell you?— for 
m\ o. for 1 have so intimately associated myself with your 

irk that I Bhonld have felt your failure absolutely as if it had 
-onal to me. All my teaching at the Museum consists 
in relating your labours ;ind predicting their fruitfulness." 

Those experiments at Pouilly le Fort caused a tremendous 

1880—1882 103 

sensation ; the whole of France burst out in an explosion of 
enthusiasm. Pasteur now knew fame under its rarest and 
purest form; the loving veneration, the almost worship with 
which he inspired those who lived near him or worked with him, 
had become the feeling of a whole nation. 

On June 13, at the Academie des Sciences, he was able to 
state as follows his results and their practical consequences : 
'We now possess virus vaccines of charbon, capable of pre- 
serving from the deadly disease, without ever being themselves 
deadly— living vaccines, to be cultivated at will, transportable 
anywhere without alteration, and prepared by a method which 
we may believe susceptible of being generalized, since it has 
been the means of discovering the vaccine of chicken-cholera. 
By the character of the conditions I am now enumerating, and 
from a purely scientific point of view, the discovery of the 
vaccine of anthrax constitutes a marked step in advance of that 
of Jenner's vaccine, since the latter has never been experi- 
mentally obtained." 

On ail sides, it was felt that something very great, very 
unexpected, justifying every sort of hope, had been brought 
forth. Ideas of research were coming up. On the very morrow 
of the results obtained at Pouilly le Fort, Pasteur was asked to 
go to the Cape to study a contagious disease raging among goats. 
' Your father would like to take that long journey," wrote 
Mme. Pasteur to her daughter, " passing on his way through 
Senegal to gather some good germs of pernicious fever ; but I 
am trying to moderate his ardour. I consider that the study 
of hydrophobia should suffice him for the present." 

He was at that time " at boiling point," as he put it— going 
from his laboratory work to the Academies of Sciences and 
Medicine to read some notes ; then to read reports at the Agri- 
cultural Society ; to Versailles, to give a lecture to an Agronomic 
Congress, and to Alfort to lecture to the professors and students. 
His clear and well-arranged words, the connection between 
ideas and the facts supporting them, the methodical recital of 
experiments, allied to an enthusiastic view of the future and 
its prospects— especially when addressing a youthful audience— 
deeply impressed his hearers. Those who saw and heard him 
for the first time were the more surprised that, in certain 
circles, a legend had formed round Pasteur's name. He had 
been described as of an irritable, intolerant temper, domineering 
and authoritative, almost despotic; and people now saw a man 


of perfect simplicity, so modest that he did not seem to realize 
his own glory, pleased to answer — even to provoke — every 
objection, only raising his voice to defend Truth, to exalt Work, 
and to inspire love for France, which he wished to see again in 
the first rank of nations. He did not cease to repeat that the 
country must regain her place through scientific progress. Boys 
and youths — ever quick to penetrate the clever calculations of 
those who seek their own interest instead of accomplishing a 
duty — listened to him eagerly and, very soon conquered, 
enrolled themselves among his followers. In him they recog- 
nized the three rarely united qualities which go to form true 
benefactors of humanity : a mighty genius, great force of 
character, and genuine goodness. 

The Republican Government, desirous of recognizing this 
great discovery of splenic fever vaccination, offered him the 
Grand Cordon of the Legion of Honour. Pasteur put forward 
one condition ; he wanted, at the same time, the red ribbon for 
his two collaborators. " What I have most set my heart upon is 
to obtain the Cross for Chamberland and Roux," he wrote to 
his son-in-law on June 26 ; " only at that price will I accept the 
Grand Cross. They are taking such trouble ! Yesterday they 
went to a place fifteen kilometres from Senlis, to vaccinate ten 
cows and 250 sheep. On Thursday we vaccinated 300 sheep at 
Vincennes. On Sunday they were near Coulommiers. On 
Friday we are going to Pithiviers. What I chiefly wish is that 
the discovery should be consecrated by an exceptional distinc- 
tion to two devoted young men, full of merit and courage. I 
wrote yesterday to Paul Bert, asking him to intervene most 
warmly in their favour." 

One of Pasteur's earliest friends, who, in 1862, had greeted 
with joy his election to the Academic des Sciences, and who 
had never ceased to show the greatest interest in the progress 
due to the experimental method, entered the Ecole Normale 
laboratory with a beaming face. Happy to bring good tidings, 
he took his share of them like the devoted, hardworking, kindly 
man that he was. " M. Gran dean," wrote Mine. Pasteur to 
her children, " has just brought to the laboratory the news that 
Roux and Chamberland ha v.- the Cross and M. Pasteur the 
Grand Cross of the Legion of Honour. Hearty congratulations 
were exchanged in the midst of the rabbits and guinea-pigs." 

Those days were darkened by a great sorrow. Henri Sainte 

1880—1882 105 

Claire Deville died. Pasteur was then reminded of the words 
of his friend in 1868 : " You will survive me, I am your senior ; 
promise that you will pronounce my funeral oration." When 
formulating this desire, Sainte Claire Deville had no doubt been 
desirous of giving another direction to the presentiments of 
Pasteur, who believed himself death-stricken. But, whether 
it was from a secret desire, or from an affectionate impulse, he 
felt that none understood him better than Pasteur. Both loved 
Science after the same manner ; they gave to patriotism its 
real place ; they had hopes for the future of the human mind ; 
they were moved by the same religious feelings before the 
mysteries of the Infinite. 

Pasteur began by recalling his friend's wish: "And here 
am I, before thy cold remains, obliged to ask my memory what 
thou wert in order to repeat it to the multitude crowding around 
thy cofifin. But how superfluous 1 Thy sympathetic counten- 
ance, thy witty merriment and frank smile, the sound of thy 
voice remain with us and live within us. The earth which 
bears us, the air we breathe, the elements, often interrogated 
and ever docile to answer thee, could speak to us of thee. Thy 
services to Science are known to the whole world, and every 
one who has appreciated the progress of the human mind is now 
mourning for thee." 

He then enumerated the scientist's qualities, the inventive 
precision of that eager mind, full of imagination, and at the 
same time the strictness of analysis and the fruitful teaching so 
delightedly recognized by those who had worked with him, 
Debray, Troost, Fouque, Grandeau, Hautefeuille, Gernez, 
Lechartier. Then, showing that, in Sainte Claire Deville, 
the man equalled the scientist : 

' Shall I now say what thou wert in private life ? Again , 
how superfluous ! Thy friends do not want to be reminded 
of thy warm heart. Thy pupils want no proofs of thy affection 
for them and thy devotion in being of service to them ! See 
their sorrow. 

' Should I tell thy sons, thy five sons, thy joy and pride, of 
the preoccupations of thy paternal and prudent tenderness? 
And can I speak of thy smiling goodness to her, the com- 
panion of thy life the mere thought of whom filled thy eyes 
with a sweet emotion? 

" Oh ! I implore thee, do not now look down upon thy weep- 
ing wife and afflicted sons : thou wouldst regret this life too 


much i Wait for them rather in those divine regions of know- 
led^- and full light, where thou knowest all now, where thou 
1 the Infinite itself , that terrible and bewildering 
notion, closed for ever to man in this world, and yet the eternal 
source of all Grandeur, of all Justice and all Liberty." 

tear's voice was almost stifled by his tears, as had been 
that of J. B. Dumas speaking at Peclet's tomb. The emotions 
of savants are all the deeper that they are not enfeebled, as in 
so many writers or speakers, by the constant use of words 
which end by wearing out the feelings. 

Little groups slowly walking away from a country church- 
yard seem to take with them some of the sadness they have 
o feeling, but the departure from a Paris cemetery gives a 
very different impression. Life immediately grasps again and 
carries away in its movement the mourners, who now look as if 
they had been witnessing an incident in which they were not 
concerned. Pasteur felt such bitter contrasts with all his 
tender soul, he had a cult for dear memories; Sainte Claire 
Deville's portrait ever remained in his study. 

The adversaries of the new discovery now had recourse to a 
new mode of attack. The virus which had been used at Pouilly 
le Fort to show how efficacious were the preventive vaccina- 
tions was, they said, a culture virus — some even said a 
Machiavellian preparation of I qt'b. Would vaccinated 
animals resist equally well the action of the charbon blood 
itself, the really malignant and infallibly deadly blood? Those 
sceptics were therefore impatiently awaiting the result of some 
experimi nts which were being carried out near Chartres in the 
farm of Lambert. Sixteen Beauceron sheep were joined to a 
lot (if nineteen she, p brought from Alfort and taken from the 
herd of 300 sheep vaccinated against charbon three weeks 
before, on tin- very day of the lecture at Alfort. On July 16, 
at 10 o'clock in the morning, the thirty-fiv, ;>. vaccinated 

and non-vaccinated, were gathered together. The corpse of a 
6hcep who had died of charbon four hours before, in a neigh- 
bouring farm, was brought into the field selected for the exptri- 

■ nts. After making a post-mortem examination and noting 

the characteristic injuries of splenic fever, ten drops of th< 

id sheep's blood were injected into each of the thirty-five 

sheep, taking one vaccinated at Alfort and one non-vaccinated 

ue, r,»n alternately. Two days later, on July 18. ten of the 

1880—1882 107 

latter were already dead, most of the others were prostrated. 
The vaccinated sheep were perfectly well. 

While the ten dead sheep were being examined, two more 
died, and three more on the 19th. Bouley, informed by the 
veterinary surgeon, Boutet, of those successive incidents, wrote 
on the 20th to Pasteur: "My dear Master, Boutet has just 
informed me of the Chartres event. All has been accomplished 
according to the master's words ; your vaccinated sheep have 
triumphantly come through the trial, and all the others save 
one are dead. That result is of special importance in a 
country-side where incredulity was being maintained in spite 
of all the demonstrations made. It seems that the doctors 
especially were refractory. They said it was too good to be 
true, and they counted on the strength of the natural charbon 
to find your method in default. Now they are converted, 
Boutet writes, and the veterinary surgeon too — one amongst 
others, whose brain, it seems, was absolutely iron-clad — also 
the agricultors. There is a general Hosannah in your honour." 

After congratulating Pasteur on the Grand Cross, he added, 
" I was also very glad of the reward you have obtained for 
your two young collaborators, so full of your spirit, so devoted 
to your work and your person, and whose assistance is so self- 
sacrificing and disinterested. The Government has honoured 
itself by so happily crowning with that distinction the great- 
ness of the discovery in which they took part." 

Henceforth, and for a time, systematic opposition ceased. 
Thousands and thousands of doses were used of the new 
vaccine, which afterwards saved millions to agriculture. 

A few days later, came a change in Pasteur's surroundings. 
He was invited by the Organizing Committee to attend the 
International Medical Congress in London, and desired by the 
Government of the Republic to represent France. 

On August 3, when he arrived in St. James' Hall, filled to 
overflowing, from the stalls to the topmost galleries, he was 
recognized by one of the stewards, who invited him to come to 
the platform reserved for the most illustrious members of the 
Congress. As he was going towards the platform, there was 
an outburst of applause, hurrahs and acclamations. Pasteur 
turned to his two companions, his son and his son-in-law, and 
said, with a little uneasiness : " It is no doubt the Prince of 
Wales arriving ; I ought to have come sooner." 

'But it is you that they are all cheering," said the Presi- 


dent of the Congress, Sir James Paget, with his grave, kindly 

A few moments later, the Prince of Wales entered, accom- 
panying his brother-in-law, the German Crown Prince. 

In his speech, Sir James Paget said that medical science 
should aim at three objects : novelty, utility and charity. The 
only scientist named was Pasteur ; the applause was such thai 
Pasteur, who was sitting behind Sir James Paget, had to rise 
and bow to the huge assembly. 

' I felt very proud," wrote Pasteur to Mme. Pasteur in a 
Letter dated that same day, " I felt inwardly very proud, not 
for myself— you know how little I care for triumph !— but for 
my country, in seeing that I was specially distinguished among 
that immense concourse of foreigners, especially of Germans, 
who are here in much greater numbers than the French, whose 
total, however, reaches two hundred and fifty. Jean Baptiste 
and Rene were in the Hall ; you can imagine their emotion. 

" After the meeting, we lunched at Sir James Paget's 
house ; he had the Prussian Crown Prince on his right and the 
Prince of Wales on his left. Then there was a gathering of 
about twenty-five or thirty guests in the drawing-room. Sir 
James presented me to the Prince of Wales, to whom I bowed, 
saying that I was happy to salute a friend to France. ' Yes,' 
he answered, ' a great friend.' Sir James Paget had the good 
taste not to ask me to be presented to the Prince of Prussia ; 
though there is of course room for nothing but courtesy ur, 
such circumstances, I could not have brought myself to appear 
to wish to be presented to him. But he himself came up to 
me and said, * M. Pasteur, allow me to introduce myself to 
you, and to tell you that I had great pleasure in applauding 
you just now,' adding sum,' more pleasant tilings." 

In the midst of the unexpected mi - brought about by 

that Congress, it was an interesting thing to see this son of a 
King and Emperor, the heir to the German crown, thus going 
towards that Frenchman whose conquests were made o 
disease and death. Of what glory might one day dream this 
Prince, who became Frederic III ! 

His tall and commanding stature, the highest position in the 
Prussian army conferred on him by his father, King William, 
in ;i solemn letter dated from Vers .illes, October, 1870— eve 
thing seemed to combine in making a warlike man of this 
p'werful-looking prince. And yet was it not said in France 

1880—1882 109 

that he had protested against certain barbarities, coldly 
executed by some Prussian generals during that campaign of 
1870? Had he not considered the clauses of the Treaty of 
Frankfort as Draconian and dangerous? If he had been sole 
master, would he have torn Alsace away from France? What 
share would his coming reign bear in the history of civiliza- 
tion? . . . Fate had already marked this Prince, only fifty 
years old, for an approaching death. In his great sufferings, 
before the inexorable death which was suffocating him, he was 
heroically patient. His long agony began at San Remo, 
amongst the roses and sunshine ; he was an Emperor for less 
than one hundred days, and, on his death-bed, words of peace, 
peace for his people, were on his lips. 

As Pasteur, coming to this Congress, was not only curious to 
see what was the place held in medicine and surgery by the 
germ-theory, but also desirous to learn as much as possible, he 
never missed a discussion and attended every meeting. It wa9 
in a simple sectional meeting that Bastian attempted to refute 
Lister. After his speech, the President suddenly said, " I call 
on M. Pasteur," though Pasteur had not risen. There was 
great applause ; Pasteur did not know English ; he turned to 
Lister and asked him what Bastian had said. 

"He said," whispered Lister, "that microscopic organiza- 
tions in disease were formed by the tissues themselves." 

"That is enough for me," said Pasteur. And he then 
invited Bastian to try the following experiment : 

" Take an animal's limb, crush it, allow blood and other 
normal or abnormal liquids to spread around the bones, only 
taking care that the skin should neither be torn nor opened in 
any way, and I defy you to see any micro-organism formed 
within that limb as long as the illness will last." 

Pasteur, desired to do so by Sir James Paget at one of the 
great General Meetings of the Congress, gave a lecture on the 
principles which had led him to the attenuation of virus, on 
the methods which had enabled him to obtain the vaccines of 
chicken-cholera and of charbon, and, finally, on the results 
obtained. ' In a fortnight," he said, " we vaccinated, in the 
Departments surrounding Paris, nearly 20,000 sheep, and a 
great many oxen, cows and horses. . . . 

' Allow me," he continued, " not to conclude without telling 
you of the great joy that I feel in thinking that it is as a 
member of the International Medical Congress sitting in 


Lorulon that I have made known to you the vaccination of 
a disease more terrible perhaps for domestic animals than is 
small-pox for man. I have given to the word vaccination an 
extension which I hope Science will consecrate as a homage 
to the merit and immense services rendered by your Jenner, 
one of England's greatest men. It is a great happiness to me 
' to glorify that immortal name on the very soil of the noble and 
hospitable city of London ! " 

"Pasteur was the greatest success of the Congress," wrote 
the correspondent of the Journal des Debats, Dr. Paremberg, 
glad as a Frenchman and as a physician to hear the unanimous 
hurrahs which greeted the delegate of France. " When M. 
Pasteur spoke, when his name was mentioned, a thunder of 
applause rose from all benches, from all nations. An indefatig- 
able worker, a sagacious seeker, a precise and brilliant exp< ri- 
• mentalist, an implacable logician, and an enthusiastic apostle, 
he has produced an invincible effect on every mind." 

The English people, who chiefly look in a great man for 
power of initiative and strength of character, shared this 
admiration. One group only, alone in darkness, away from 
the Congress, was hostile to the general movement and was 
looking for an opportunity for direct or indirect revenge ; it was 
the group of anti-vaccinators and anti-vivisectionists. The 
influence of the latter was great enough in England to prevent 
experimentation on animals. At a general meeting of the 
Congress, Virchow, the German scientist, spoke on the use of 
v xprrimenting in pathology. 

Already at B preceding Congress held in Amsterdam, Virchow 
had said amid the applause of the Assembly : " Those who 
attack vivisection have not the faintest idea of Science, and 
even less of the importance and utility of vivisection for the 
progress of medicine." But to this just argument, the interna- 
tional leagues for the protection of animals— very powerful, 
like everything that is founded on a sentiment which may be 
exalted— had answered by combative phrases. The physio- 
logical laboratories were compared to chambers of torture. 
I It seemed as if. through caprice or cruelty, quite uselessly at 
anv rate, this and that man of science bad the unique desire 
of inflicting on bound animals, secured on a board, sufferings 
of which death was the only limit. It is easy to excite pity 
towards animals; an audience is conquered as soon as dogs 
^re mentioned. Which of us, whether a cherished child, a 

1880—1882 111 

neglected old maid, a man in the prime of his youth or a 
misanthrope weary of everything, has not, holding the best 
place in his recollections, the memory of some example of 
fidelity, courage or devotion given by a dog? In order to 
raise the revolt, it was sufficient for anti-vivisectionists to evoke 
amongst the ghosts of dog martyrs the oft-quoted dog who, 
whilst undergoing an experiment, licked the hand of the 
operator. As there had been some cruel abuses on the part of 
certain students, those abuses alone were quoted. Scientists 
did not pay much heed to this agitation, partly a feminine 
one : they relied on the good sense of the public to put an end 
to those doleful declamations. But the English Parliament 
voted a Bill prohibiting vivisection; and, after 1876, English 
experimentalists had to cross the Channel to inoculate a guinea- 


Virchow did not go into details; but, in a wide expose of 

Experimental Physiological Medicine, he recalled how, at each 
new progress of Science — at one time against the dissection 
of dead bodies and now against experiments on living 
animals — the same passionate criticisms had been renewed. 
The Interdiction Bill voted in England had filled a new 
Leipzig Society with ardour ; it had asked the Eeichstag 
in that same year, 1881, to pass a law punishing cruelty to 
animals under pretext of scientific research, by imprison- 
ment, varying between five weeks and two years, and de- 
privation of civil rights. Other societies did not go quite so 
far, but asked that some of their members should have a 
right of entrance and inspection into the laboratories of the 

"He who takes more interest in animals than in Science 
and in the knowledge of truth is not qualified to inspect officially 
things pertaining to Science," said Virchow. With an 
ironical gravity on his quizzical wrinkled face, he added, 
' Where shall we be if a scientist who has just begun a bona 
fide experiment finds himself, in the midst of his researches, 
obliged to answer questions from a new-comer and afterwards 
to defend himself before some magistrate for the crime of not 
having chosen another method, other instruments, perhaps 
another experiment? . . . 

' We must prove to the whole world the soundness of our 
cause," concluded Virchow, uneasy at those " leagues " which 
grew and multiplied, and scattered through innumerable 


lecture halls the most fallacious judgments on the work of 

Pasteur might have brought him, to support his statements 
relative to certain deviations of ideas and sentiments, number- 
less letters which reached him regularly from England— letters 
full of threats, insults and maledictions, devoting him to 

-nal torments for having multiplied his crimes on the hens, 
guinea-pigs, dogs and sheep of the laboratory. Love of animals 
carries some women to such lengths ! 

It would have been interesting, if, after Yirchow's speech, 
some French physician had in his turn related a series of fa> 
showing how prejudices equally tenacious had had to be 
struggled against in France, and how savants had succeeded 
in enforcing the certainty that there can be no pathological 
science if Physiology is not progressing, and that it can only 
progress by means of the experimental method. Claude 
Bernard had expressed this idea under so many forms 
that it would almost have been enough to give a few extracts 
from his works. 

In 1841, when he was Magendie's curator, he was one day 
attending a lesson on experimental physiology, when he E 
an old man come in, whose costume — a long coat with a 
straight collar and a hat with a very wide brim — indicated a 

" Thou hast no right," he said, addressing Magendie, "to 
kill animals or to make them suffer. Thou givest a wicked 
example and thou accustomest thy fellow creatures to cruelty." 

Magendie replied that it was a pity to look at it from that 
point of view, and that a physiologist, when moved by the 
thought of making a discovery useful to Medicine, and conse- 
quently useful to his fellow creatures, did not deserve that 

"Your countryman Harvey," said he, hoping to convince 
him, "would not have discovered the circulation of the blood 
if he had not made some experiments in vivisection. That 
discoverv was worth the sacrifice of a few deer in Charles 
the First's Park?" 

But the Quaker stuck to his idea; his mission, he said, was 
to drive three things from this world : war. hunting and shoot- 
ing, and experiments on live animals. Magendie had to show 
him out. 

Three years later, Claude Bernard, in his turn, was taxed 

1880—1882 113 

with barbarity by a Police Magistrate. In order to study the 
digestive properties of gastric juice, it had occurred to him to 
collect it by means of a cannula, a sort of silver tap which he 
adapted to the stomach of live dogs. A Berlin surgeon, M 
Dieffenbach, who was staying in Paris, expressed a wish to 
see this application of a cannula to the stomach. M. Pelouze 
the chemist, had a laboratory in the Eue Dauphine ; he offered 
it to Claude Bernard. A stray dog was used as a subject for 
the experiment and shut up in the yard of the house, where 
Claude Bernard wished to keep a watch on him. But, as the 
treatment in no wise hindered the dog from running about, the 
door of the yard was hardly opened when he escaped, cannula 
and all. 

'A few days later," writes Claude Bernard in the course of 
an otherwise grave report concerning the progress of general 
physiology m Prance (1867), " I was still in bed, early one 
morning, when I received a visit from a man who came to tell 
men that the Police Commissary of the Medicine School Dis- 
trict wished to speak to me, and that I must go round to see 
mm. I went m the course of the day to the Police Com- 

Z^lVJ ^M EUG du / ardmet ' 1 ^ a very respectable- 
looking little old man, who received me very coldly at first and 
without saying anything. He took me into another room and 
showed me, to my great astonishment, the dog on whom I had 
operated ir ,M Pelouze'. laboratory, asking me if I confessed 
to having fixed that instrument in his stomach. I answered 
affirmatively, adding that I was delighted to see my cannula, 
which I thought I had lost. This confession, far from satisfy- 
ing the Commissary, apparently provoked his wrath for he 

PanL m w!rb f/^f ?* °J ^ exa ^rated "verity, accom- 
panied with threats for having had the audacity to steal his 
dog to experiment on it. 

bou/ht 6 ^^ 11 ^ ^^ l h f ?°* St ° Ien his d °Z> but that I ^d 
bought it of some individuals who sold dogs to physiologists 

and who claimed to be employed by the police in p k m* up 

stray dogs. I added that I was sorry to have been the invo°lun 

tary cause of the grief occasioned in his household by the mS 

adventure to the dog, but that the animal would not d e o^ 

hat the only thing to do was to let me take away my sUver 

cannula and let him keep his dog. Those last wonted 

and daughter. I removed my instrument and left, promising 


to return, which I did the next and following days. The dog 
was perfectly cored in a day or two, and I became a friend of 
the family, completely securing the Commissary's future pro- 
tection. It was on that account that I soon after set up my 
1'ihoratory in his District, and for many years continued my 
private classes of experimental physiology, enjoying the pro- 
• tion and warnings of the Commissary and thus avoiding 
much unpleasantness, until the time when I was at last made 
an assistant to Magendie at the College de France." 

The London Society for the Protection of Animals had the 
singular idea of sending to Napoleon III complaints, almost 
remonstrances, on the vivisection practised within the French 
Empire. The Emperor simply sent on those English lamenta- 
tions to the Academy of Medicine. The matter was prolonged 
by academical speeches. In a letter addressed to M. Grandeau. 
undated, but evidently written in August, 1863. Claude 
Bernard showed some irritation, a rare thing with him. 
Declaring that he would not go to the Academy and listen to 
the " nonsense" of "those who protect animals in hatred of 
mankind" he gave his concluding epitome: "You ask me 
what are the principal discoveries due to vivisection, so that 
you can mention them as arguments for that kind of study. 
All the knowledge possessed by experimental physiology can 
be quoted in that connection ; there is not a single fact which 
is not the direct and necessary consequence of vivisection. 
From Galen, who, by cutting the laryngeal nerves, learnt their 
use for respiration and the voice, to Harvey, who disc 
circulation ; Pecquet and Aselli, the lymphatic vessels; Haller, 
muscular irritability; Bell and Magendie, the nervous func- 
tions, and all that has been learnt since the extension of that 
method of vivisection, which is the only experimental method ; 
in biology, all that is known on digestion, circulation, the 
liver, the sympathetic system, the bones, Development— all, 
absolutely all, is the result of vivisection, alone or combined 
with other means of study." 

In 1S75. he :!_ r ain returned to this idea in his experimental 

medicine classes at the College de France : " It is to experi- 

itat ion that we owe all our precise notions on the functions 

of the viscera and a fortiori on the properties of such organs 

as muscle-. :; :-. fcc." 

One more ir -ig quotation might have been offered to 

the members of the Congress. A Swede had questioned 

1880—1882 115 

Darwin on vivisection, for the anti-vivisectionist propaganda 
was spreading on every side. Darwin, who, like Pasteur, did 
not admit that useless suffering should be inflicted on animals 
(Pasteur carried this so far that he would never, he said, have 
had the courage to shoot a bird for sport)— Darwin, in a letter 
dated April 14th, 1881, approved any measures that could be 
taken to prevent cruelty, but he added : " On the other hand, 
I know that physiology can make no progress if experiments 
on living animals are suppressed, and I have an intimate con- 
viction that to retard the progress of physiology is to commit 
a crime against humanity. . . . Unless one is absolutely igno- 
rant of all that Science has done for humanity, one must be 
convinced that physiology is destined to render incalculable 
benefits in the future to man and even to animals. See 
the results obtained by M. Pasteur's work on the germs 
of contagious diseases : will not animals be the first to 
profit thereby? How many lives have been saved, how much 
suffering spared by the discovery of parasitic worms following 
on experiments made by Virchow and others on livin? 
animals ! " 

The London Congress marked a step on the road of progress. 
Besides the questions which were discussed and which°were 
capable of precise solution, the scientific spirit showed itself 
susceptible of permeating other general subjects. Instead of 
remaining the impassive Sovereign we are wont to fancy her, 
Science— and this was proved by Pasteur's discoveries and 
their consequences, as Paget, Tyndall, Lister, and Priestley 
loudly proclaimed— Science showed herself capable of associat- 
ing with pure research and perpetual care for Truth a deep 
feeling of compassion for all suffering and an ever-growing 
thirst for self-sacrifice. 

Pasteur's speech at the London Medical Congress was 
printed at the request of an English ALP. and distributed to 
all the members of the House of Commons. Dr. H. Gueneau 
de Mussy, who had spent part of his life in England, havin* 
followed the Orleans family into exile, wrote to Pasteur on 
August 15, 'I have been very happy in witnessing your 
triumph ; you are raising us up again in the eyes of foreign 

Applause was to Pasteur but a stimulus to further efforts 
He was proud of his discoveries, but not vain of the effect they 
produced; he said in a private letter: "The Temps again 


refers, in a London letter, to my speech at the Congress. What 
an unexpected success I " 

ring heard that yellow fever had just been brought intc 
the Gironde, at the Pauillac lazaretto by the vessel Conde from 
Senegal, Pasteur immediately started for Bordeaux. He 
hoped to find the microbe in the blood of the sick or the dead, 
and to succeed in cultivating it. M. Eoux hastened to join his 

If people spoke to Pasteur of the danger of infection, " What 
does it matter?" he said. "Life in the midst of danger is 
tlie life, the real life, the life of sacrifice, of example, of 

He was vexed to find his arrival notified in the newspapers ; 
it worried him not to be able to work and to travel incognito. 

On September 17, he wrote to Mine. Pasteur: "... We 
rowed out to a great transport ship which is lying in the 
Pauillac roads, having just arrived. From our boat, we were 
able to speak to the men of the crew. Their health is good, 
but they lost seven persons at St. Louis, two passengers and 
five men of the crew. Save the captain and one engineer, they 
are all Senegalese negroes on that ship. We have been near 
another large steamboat, and yet another; their health is 
equally good. . . . 

" The most afflicted ship is the Conde, which is in quaran- 
tine in the Pauillac roads, and near which we have not l> 
able to go. She has lost eighteen persons, either at sea or at 
the lazaretto. ..." 

No experiment could be attempted — the patients were con- 
valescent. "But," he wrote the next day, "the Richelieu 
will arrive between the 25th and 28th, I think with some 
passengers. ... It is more than likely that there will have 
been deaths during the passage, and patients for the lazaretto. 
I am therefore awaiting the arrival of that ship with the hope 
— God forgive a scientist's passion I ! — that I may atteinjn 
6ome researches at the Pauillac lazaretto, where I will arrai 
things in consequence. You may be sure I shall take 
every precaution. In the meanwhile, what shall I do in 

" 1 have made the acquaintance of the young librarian of 
the town library, which is a few doors from the Hotel 
Richelieu, in the Avenues of Tourny. The library is opened 
to me at all hours : 1 am there even now, alone and very com- 

1880—1882 117 

fortably seated, surrounded with more Littre than I can 
possibly get through." 

For some months, several members of the Academie 
Francaise — according to the traditions of the Society which 
has ever thought it an honour to number among its members 
scientists such as Cuvier, Flourens, Biot, Claude Bernard, 
J. B. Dumas — had been urging Pasteur to become a candidate to 
the place left vacant by Littre. Pasteur was anxious to know 
not only the works, but the life of him whose place he might 
be called upon to fill. It was with some emotion that he first 
came upon the following lines printed on the title-page of the 
translation of the works of Hippocrates ; they are a dedication 
by Littre" to the memory of his father, a sergeant-major in the 
Marines under the Revolution. 

... Prepared by his lessons and by his example, I have 
been sustained through this long work by his ever present 
memory. I wish to inscribe his name on the first page of this 
book, in the writing of which he has had so much share from 
his grave, so that the work of the father should not be forgotten 
in the work of the son, and that a pious and just gratitude 
should connect the work of the living with the heritage of the 
dead. ..." 

Pasteur in 1876 had obeyed a similar filial feeling when he 
wrote on the first page of his Studies on Beer — 

' To the memory of my father, a soldier under the first 
Empire, and a knight of the Legion of Honour. The more 
1 have advanced in age, the better I have understood thy love 
and the superiority of thy reason. The efforts I have given ' 
to these Studies and those which have preceded them are the 
fruit of thy example and advice. Wishing to honour these 
pious recollections, I dedicate this work to thy memory." 

The two dedications are very similar. Those two soldiers' 
sons had kept the virile imprint of the paternal virtues. A 
great tenderness was also in them both; Littre, when he lost 
his mother, had felt a terrible grief, comparable to Pasteur's 
under the same circumstances. 

In spite of Pasteur's interest in studying Littre in the 
Bordeaux library, he did not cease thinking of yellow fever. 
He often saw M. Berchon, the sanitary director, and inquired 
of him whether there were any news of the Richelieu. A 
young physician, Dr. Talmy, had expressed a desire to join 
Pasteur at Bordeaux and to obtain permission , when the time 

z 2 


came, to be shut up with the patients in the lazaretto. Pasteur 
wrote on December -5 to Mine. Pasteur: 'There is nothing 
new save the Minister's authorization to Dr. Talmy to enter 
the lazaretto; I have just telegraphed to him that he might 
rt. The owners of the Richelieu still suppose that she will 
reach Pauillac on Tuesday. M. Berchon, who is the first to 
be informed of what takes place in the roads, will send me a 
telegram as soon as the Richelieu is signalled, and we shall 
then go — M. Talmy, lioux and I — to ascertain the state of 
the ship, of course without going on board, which we should 
not be allowed to do if it has a suspicious bill of health." 

And, as Mme. Pasteur had asked what happened when a 
ship arrived, he continued in the same letter : " From his 
boat to windward, M. JVrchon receives the ship's papers, 
giving the sanitary state of the ship day by day. Before pass- 
ing from the hands of the captain of the vessel to those of the 
sanitary director, the papers are sprinkled over with chloride 
of lime. 

" If there are cases of illness, all the passengers are takeD 
to the lazaretto; only a few men are left on board the ship, 
which is henceforth in quarantine, no one being allowed to 
leave or enter it. 

" God permit that, in the body of one of those unfortunate 
victims of medical ignorance, I may discover some specific 
microscopic being. And after that? Afterwards, it would be 
really beautiful to make that agent of disease and death become 
its own vaccine. Yellow fever is one of the three great scour. 
of the East— bubonic plague, cholera, and yellow fever. Do 
you know that it is already a tine thing to be able to put the 
problem in those words ! " 

The Richelieu arrived, but she was free from fever. The 
last passenger had died during the crossing and his b< dy had 
been thrown into the sea. 

Pasteur left Bordeaux and returned to his laboratory. 



Pasteur was in the midst of some new experiments when he 
heard that the date of the election to the Academie Francaise 
was fixed for December 8. Certain candidates spent half their 
time in fiacres, paying the traditional calls, counting the 
voters, calculating their chances, and taking every polite phrase 
for a promise. Pasteur, with perfect simplicity, contented 
himself with saying to the Academicians whom he went to see, 
' I had never in my life contemplated the great honour of 
entering the Academie Francaise. People have been kind 
enough to say to me, ' Stand and you will be elected ' It is 
impossible to resist an invitation so glorious for Science and 
so flattering to myself." 

One member of the Academie, Alexandre Dumas, refused to 
let Pasteur call on him. " I will not allow him to come and 
see me he said ; I will myself go and thank him for consent- 
ing to become one of us." He agreed with M. Grandeau who 
wrote to Pasteur that "when Claude Bernard and Pasteur con- 
sent^ enter the ranks of a Society, all the honour is for the 

When Pasteur was elected, his youthfulness of sentiment was 
made apparent; it seemed to him an immense honour to be 
one of the Forty He therefore prepared his reception speech 
with the greatest care, without however allowing his scientific 
work to suffer. The life of his predecessor interested" him more 

Zt T-V > ™ r VVu 6 mid5t ° f fami ^ intimac ? had evidently 
been Littre's ideal of happiness. 

Few people, beyond Littre's colleagues, know that his wife 
and daughter collaborated in his great work ; they looked out 
the quotations necessary to that Dictionary, of which, if laid 
end to end the columns would reach a length of thirty- 
seven kilometres. The Dictionary, commenced in 1857. when 


Littn^ was almost sixty years old, was only interrupted twice : 
in 1861, when Augusta Comte's widow asked Littre. for a 
biography of the founder of positive philosophy; and in 16" 
when the life of France was compromised and arrested during 
long months. 

Littn', [>oor and disinterested as he was, had been abl< 
realize his only dream, which was to possess a house in the 
country. Pasteur, bringing to bear in this, as in all things, 
his habits of scrupulous accuracy, left his laboratory for one 
day, and visited that villa, situated near Maisons-Laffitte. 

The gardener who opened the door to him might have been 
the owner of that humble dwelling; the house was in a bad 
state of repair, but the small garden gave a look of comfort to 
the little property. It had been the only luxury of the 
philosopher, who enjoyed cultivating vegetables while quoting 
Virgil, Horace or La Fontaine, and listened to the nightingale 
when early dawn found him still sitting at his work. 

After visiting this house and garden, reflecting as they did 
the life of a sage, Pasteur said sadly, " Is it possible that such 
a man should have been so misjudged ! " 

A crucifix, hanging in the room where Littre's family were 
wont to work, testified to his respect for the beliefs of his wife 
and daughter. "I know too well," he said one day, "what 
are the sufferings and difficulties of human life, to wish to take 
from any one convictions which may comfort them.", 

Pasteur also studied the Positivist doctrine of which Auguste 
Comte had been the pontiff and Littr6 the prophet. This 
scientific conception of the world affirms nothing, dei; 
nothing, beyond what is visible arid easily demonstrated. It 
suggests altruism, a 'subordination of personality to 
sociability," it inspires patriotism and the love of humanity. 
Pasteur, in his scrupulously positive and accurate work, hia 
constant thought for others, his self-sacrificing devotion to 
humanity, might have been supposed to be an adept of this 
doctrine. But he found it lacking in one great point. 
"Positivism," he said, "does not take into account the most 
important of positive notions, that of the Infinite." He won- 
dered that Positivism Bhould confine the mind within limits; 
with an impulse of deep feeling, Pasteur, the scientist, the slow 
and precise observer, wrote the following passage in his 
speech : ' What is beyond? the human mind, actuated by an 
invincible force, will never cease to ask itself : What is 

1882—1884 121 

beyond? ... It is of no use to answer : Beyond is limitless 
space, limitless time or limitless grandeur; no one understands 
those words. He who proclaims the existence of the Infinite 
— and none can avoid it — accumulates in that affirmation more 
of the supernatural than is to be found in all the miracles of 
all the religions ; for the notion of the Infinite presents that 
double character that it forces itself upon us and yet is incom- 
prehensible. When this notion seizes upon our understand- 
ing, we can but kneel. ... I see everywhere the inevitable 
expression of the Infinite in the world; through it, the super- 
natural is at the bottom of every heart. The idea of God is a 
form of the idea of the Infinite. As long as the mystery of the 
Infinite weighs on human thought, temples will be erected 
for the worship of the Infinite, whether God is called Brahma, 
Allah, Jehovah, or Jesus; and on the pavement of those 
temples, men will be seen kneeling, prostrated, annihilated in 
the thought of the Infinite." 

At that time, when triumphant Positivism was inspiring 
many leaders of men, the very man who might have given him- 
self up to what he called " the enchantment of Science " pro- 
claimed the Mystery of the universe ; with his intellectual 
humility, Pasteur bowed before a Power greater than human 
power. He continued with the following words, worthy of 
being preserved for ever, for they are of those which pass over 
humanity like a Divine breath: "Blessed is he who carries 
within himself a God, an ideal, and who obeys it ; ideal of art, 
ideal of science, ideal of the gospel virtues, therein lie the 
springs of great thoughts and great actions ; they all reflect 
light from the Infinite." * 

Pasteur concluded by a supreme homage to Littre. " Often 
have I fancied him seated by his wife, as in a picture of early 
Christian times: he, looking down upon earth, full of com- 
passion for human suffering; she, a fervent Catholic, her eyes 
raised to heaven : he, inspired by all earthly virtues; she, by 
every Divine grandeur ; uniting in one impulse and in one 
heart the twofold holiness which forms the aureole of the Man- 
God, the one proceeding from devotion to humanity, the other 
emanating from ardent love for the Divinity : she a saint in 
the canonic sense of the word, he a lay-saint. This last word 
is not mine ; I have gathered it on the lips of all those that 
knew him." 

The two colleagues whom Pasteur had chosen for his 


Academic sponsors were J. B. Dumas and Nisard. Dumas, 
who appreciated more than any one the scientific progress due 
to Pasteur, and who applauded his brilliant success, was 
touched by the simplicity and modesty which his former pupil 
showed, now as in the distant past, when the then obscure 
young man sat taking notes on the Sorbonne benches. 

Their mutual relationship had remained unchanged when 
Pasteur, accompanied by one of his family, rang at Dumas' 
door in March, 1882, with the manuscript of his noble speech 
in his pocket ; he seemed more like a student, respectfully call- 
ing on his master, than like a savant affectionately visiting a 

Dumas received Pasteur in a little private study adjoining 
the fine drawing-room where he was accustomed to dispense 
an elegant hospitality. Pasteur drew a stool up to a table and 
began to read, but in a shy and hurried manner, without even 
raising his eyes towards Dumas, who listened, enthroned in 
his armchair, with an occasional murmur of approbation. 
Whilst Pasteur's careworn face revealed some of his ardent 
struggles and persevering work, nothing perturbed Dumas' 
grave and gentle countenance. His smile, at most times pru- 
dently affable and benevolent in varying degree, now frankly 
illumined his face as he congratulated Pasteur. He called to 
mind his own reception speech at the Academy when he had 
succeeded Guizot, and the fact that he too had concluded by a 
confession of faith in his Creator. 

Pasteur's other sponsor, Nisard, almost an octogenarian, 
was not so happy as Dumas ; death had deprived him of almost 
all his old friends. It was a great joy to him when Pasteur 
came to see him on the wintry Sunday afternoons; he fancied 
himself back again at the Ecole Normale and the happy days 
when he reigned supreme in that establishment. Pasteur's 
deference, greater even perhaps than it had been in former 
times, aided the delightful delusion. Though Nisard was ever 
inclined to bring a shade of patronage into every intimacy, he 
was a conversationalist of the old and rare stamp. Pasteur 
rnjoyed hearing Nisard's recollections and watching for a smile 
lighting up the almost blind face. Those Sunday talks 
reminded him of the old delightful conversations with Chappuis 
at the Besancon College when, in their youthful fervour, they 
read together Andre Chenier's and Lamartine's verses. 
Eighteen years later, Pasteur had not missed one of Sainte 

1882—1884 123 

Beuve's lectures to the Ecole Normale students ; he liked that 
varied and penetrating criticism, opening sidelights on every 
point of the literary horizon. Nisard understood criticism 
rather as a solemn treaty, with clauses and conditions ; with 
his taste for hierarchy, he even gave different ranks to authors 
as if they had been students before his chair. But, when he 
spoke, the rigidity of his system was enveloped in the grace 
of his conversation. Pasteur had but a restricted corner of his 
mind to give to literature, but that corner was a privileged 
one; he only read what was really worth reading, and every 
writer worthy of the name inspired him with more than esteem, 
with absolute respect. He had a most exalted idea of Literature 
and its influence on society ; he was saying one day to Nisard 
that Literature was a great educator : " The mind alone can 
if necessary suffice to Science ; both the mind and the heart 
intervene in Literature, and that explains the secret of its 
superiority in leading the general train of thought." This was 
preaching to an apostle : no homage to literature ever seemed 
too great in the eyes of Nisard. 
He approved of the modest exordium in Pasteur's speech— 
' At this moment when presenting myself before this illus- 
trious assembly, I feel once more the emotion with which I first 
solicited your suffrages. The sense of my own inadequacy is 
borne in upon me afresh, and I should feel some confusion in 
finding myself in this place, were it not my duty to attribute 
to Science itself the honour— so to speak, an impersonal one— 
which you have bestowed upon me." 

The Permanent Secretary, Camille Doucet, well versed in 
the usages of the Institute, and preoccupied with the effect pro- 
duced, thought that the public would not believe in such self- 
effacement, sincere as it was, and sent the following letter to 
Pasteur with the proof-sheet of his speech— 

"Dear and honoured colleague, allow me to suggest to you a 
modification of your first sentence ; your modesty is excessive." 
Camille Doucet had struck out the sense of my own 
inadequacy is borne in upon me afresh, and further so to speak, 
an impersonal one. Pasteur consulted Nisard, and the sense 
of my own inadequacy was replaced by the sense of my 
deficiencies, while Pasteur adhered energetically to so to speak, 
an impersonal one ; he saw in his election less a particular dis- 
tinction than a homage rendered to Science in general. 

A reception at the Academie Francaise is like a sensational 


first night at a theatre ; a special public is interested d 
beforehand in every coming detail. Wives, d rs, sisters 

of Academicians, great ladies interested in coming candidates, 
widows of deceased Academicians, laureates of various 
Academy prizes— the whole literary world agitates to obtain 
tickets. Pasteur's reception promised to be full of interest, 
some even Baid piquancy, for it fell to Kenan to welcome him. 

In order to have a foretaste of the contrast I n the two 

men it was sufficient to recall Kenan's opening speech three 
y< trs before, when he succeeded Claude Bernard. His thanks 
to his colleagues began thus — 

" Your cenaculum is only reached at the age of Ecclesiastes. 
a delightful age of serene cheerfulness, when after a laborious 
prime, it begins to be seen that all is but vanity, but also that 
some vain things are worthy of being lingeringly enjoyed. - ' 

The two minds were as different as the two speeches ; 
Pasteur took everything seriously, giving to words their abso- 
lute sense; Renan, an incomparable writer, with his supple, 
undulating style, slipped away and hid himself within the 
sinuosities of his own philosophy. He disliked plain state- 
ments, and was ever ready to deny when others affirmed, even 
if he afterwards blamed excessive negation in his own followers. 
He iv 1 lgiously consoled those whose faith he destroyed, and, 
whilst invoking the Eternal, claimed the right of finding fault 
even there. When applauded by a crowd, he would willingly 
have murmured Noli ///<■ tang* re, and even added with his joyful 
mixture of disdain and good-fellowship, "Let infinitely witty 
men come unto me." 

( In thai Thursday, April 27. 18.S2, the Institute was crowded. 
When the noise had subsided, Renan, seated at the desk as 
1'irector of the Academy between Camille Doucet, the 1 
manent B try, and Maxime du Camp, the Chancellor, 

declared the meeting opened. Pasteur, looking paler than 
usual, rose from his seat, dressed in the customary green- 
embroidered coat of an Academician, weiring across his breast 
the Grand Cordon of the Legion of Honour. In a clear, grave 
voice, he began by expressing his deep gratification, and, with 
the absolute knowledge and sincerity which always compelled 
the Attention of his audience, of whatever kind, he proceeded 
to praise his predecessor. There was no artifice of composi- 
tion, no Struggle after effect, only a homage to the man, fol- 
lowed almost immediately by a confession of dissent on 

1882—1884 125 

philosophic questions. He was listened to with attentive 
emotion, and when he showed the error of Positivism in 
attempting to do away with the idea of the Infinite, and pro- 
claimed the instinctive and necessary worship by Man of the 
great Mystery, he seemed to bring out all the weakness and 
the dignity of Man— passing through this world bowed under 
the law of Toil and with the prescience of the Ideal— into a 
startling and consolatory light. 

One of the privileges of the Academician who receives a new 
member is to remain seated in his armchair before a table, and 
to comfortably prepare to read his own speech, in answer, 
often in contradiction, to the first. Renan, visibly enjoying 
the presidential chair, smiled at the audience with complex 
feelings, understood by some who were his assiduous readers. 
Eespect for so much work achieved by a scientist of the first 
rank in the world ; a gratified feeling of the honour which 
reverted to France ; some personal pleasure in welcoming such 
a man in the name of the Academie, and, at the same time, in 
the opportunity for a light and ironical answer to Pasteur's 
beliefs— all these sensations were perceptible in Kenan's 
powerful face, the benevolence of whose soft blue eyes was 
corrected by the redoubtable keenness of the smile. 

He began in a caressing voice by acknowledging that the 
Academy was somewhat incompetent to judge of ° the work 
and glory of Pasteur. "But," he added, with graceful 
eloquence, "apart from the ground of the doctrine, which is 
not within our attributions, there is, Sir, a greatness on which 
our experience of the human mind gives us a right to 
pronounce an opinion; something which we recognize in the 
most varied applications, which belongs in the same degree to 
Galileo, Pascal, Michael- Angelo, or Moliere ; something* which 
gives sublimity to the poet, depth to the philosopher, "fascina- 
tion to the orator, divination to the scientist. 

"That common basis of all beautiful and true work, that 
divine fire, that indefinable breath which inspires Science, 
Literature, and Art— we have found it in you, Sir— it is 
Genius. No one has walked so surely through the circles of 
elemental nature ; your scientific life is like unto a luminous 
tract in the great night of the Infinitesimally Small, in that 
last abyss where life is born." 

After a brilliant and rapid enumeration of the Pastorian 
discoveries, congratulating Pasteur on having touched through 

126 the life of pasteub 

his art the very confines of the springs of life, Renan w< 
on to speak of truth as he would have spoken of a woman : 
' Truth, Sir, is a great coquette; she will not be sought with 
too much passion, but often is most amenable to indifference. 
She escapes when apparently caught, but gives herself up 
if patiently waited for: revealing herself after farewells 
been said, but inexorable when loved with too much fervour. " 
And further : ' Nature is plebeian, and insists upon work, 
preferring horny hands and careworn brows." 

He then commenced a courteous controversy. Whilst 
Pasteur, with his vision of the Infinite, showed himself as 
religious as Newton, Renan, who enjoyed moral problems, 
spoke of Doubt with delectation. " The answer to the enigma 
which torments and charms us will never be given to us 
. . . What matters it, since the imperceptible corner of 
reality which we see is full of delicious harmonies, and since 
life, as bestowed upon us, is an excellent gift, and for each of 
us a revelation of infinite goodness? " 

legend will probably hand to posterity a picture of Renan 
as he was in those latter days, ironically cheerful and 
unctuously indulgent. But, before attaining the quizzical 
tranquillity he now exhibited to the Academy, he had gone 
through a complete evolution. When about the age of forty- 
eight, he might bitterly have owned that there was not one 
basis of thought which in him had not crumbled to dust. 
Beliefs, political ideas, his ideal of European civilization, all 
had fallen to the ground. After his separation from the 
Church, he had turned to historical science; Germany had 
appeared to him, as once to Madame de Stael and so many 
others, as a refuge for thinkers. It had seemed to him 
that a collaboration between France, England, and <; ( rmany 
would create "An invincible trinity, carrying the world along 
the road of progress through reason.*' But that German 
facade which he took for that of a temple hid behind it the 
most formidable barracks which Europe had ever known, and 
beside it were cannon foundries, death-manufactories, all the 
preparations of the German people for the invasion of France. 
His awakening was bitter; war as practised by the Prussians, 
with a method in their cruelty, tilled him with grief. 

Time passed and his art. like a lily of the desert growing 
amongst ruins, gave flowers and perfumes to surrounding 
-moral devastation. A mixture of disdain and nobilitv now 

1882—1884 127 

made him regard as almost imperceptible the number of men 
capable of understanding his philosophical elevation. Pasteur 
had bared his soul ; Renan took pleasure in throwing light on 
the intellectual antithesis of certain minds, and on their points 
of contact. 

" Allow me, Sir, to recall to you your fine discovery of rigfit 
and left tartaric acids. . . . There are some minds which 
it is as impossible to bring together as it is impossible, accord- 
ing to your own comparison, to fit two gloves one into the 
other. And yet both gloves are equally necessary ; they com- 
plete each other. One's two hands cannot be superposed, they 
may be joined. In the vast bosom of nature, the most diverse 
efforts, added to each other, combine with each other, and 
result in a most majestic unity." 

Eenan handled the French language, "this old and admir- 
able language, poor but to those who do not know it," with a 
dexterity, a choice of delicate shades, of tasteful harmonies 
which have never been surpassed.' Able as he was to define 
every human feeling, he went on from the above comparison, 
painting divergent intellectual capabilities, to the following 
imprecation against death: "Death, according to a thought 
admired by M. Littre, is but a function, the last and quietest 
of all. To me it seems odious, hateful, insane, when it lays 
its cold blind hand on virtue and on genius. A voice is in 
us, which only great and good souls can hear, and that voice 
cries unceasingly ' Truth and Good are the ends of thy life ; 
sacrifice all to that goal ' ; and when, following the call of that 
siren within us, claiming to bear the promises of life, we 
reach the place where the reward should await us, the deceit- 
ful consoler fails us. Philosophy, which had promised us the 
secret of death, makes a lame apology, and the ideal which 
had brought us to the limits of the air we breathe disappears 
from view at the supreme hour when we look for it. Nature's 
object has been attained; a powerful effort has been realized, 
and then, with characteristic carelessness, the enchantress 
abandons us and leaves us to the hooting birds of the night." 

Eenan, save in one little sentence in his answer to Pasteur — 
' The divine work accomplishes itself by the intimate tendency 
to what is Good and what is True in the universe" — did not 
go further into the statement of his doctrines. Perhaps he 
thought them too austere for his audience ; he was wont to 
eschew critical and religious considerations when in a world 


which he looked upon as frivolous. Moreover, he thought his 
own century amusing, and was willing to amuse it further. 
If he raised his eyes to Heaven, he said that we owe virtue 
to the Eternal, but that we have the right to add to it irony. 
Pasteur thought it strange that irony should be applied to 
subjects which have beset so many great minds and which so 
,y simple hearts solve in their own way. 

The week which followed Pasteur's reception at the Aca- 
demie Francaise brought him a manifestation of applause 
in the provinces. The town of Aubenas in the Ardeche 
was erecting a statue to Olivier de Serres. and desired to asso- 
ciate with the name of the founder of the silk industry in 
France in the sixteenth century that of its preserver in the 

This was the second time that a French town proclaimed 
its gratitude towards Pasteur. A few months before, the 
Melun Agricultural Society had held a special meeting in his 
honour, and had decided " to 6trike a medal with Pasteur's 
effigy on it, in commemoration of one of the greatest services 
ever rendered by Science to Agriculture." 

But amidst this paean of praise, Pasteur, instead of dwelling 
complacently on the recollection of his experiments at Pouilly 
le Fort, was absorbed in one idea, characteristic of the man : 
he wanted to at once begin some experiments on the peri- 
pneumonia of horned cattle. The veterinary surgeon, 
Rossignol, had just been speaking on this subject to the in 
ing. Pasteur, who had recently been asked by the Committee 
of Epizootic I diseases to inquire into the mortality .-a used 

by the inoculation of the peripneumonia virus, reminded his 
heareri in a few words of the variable qualities of virus and 
how the slightest impurity in a virus may exercise an influence 
on the effects of that virus. 

He and his collaborators had vainly tried to cultivate the 
virus of peripneumonia in chicken-broth, veal-broth, yeast- 
water, etc. They had to gather the virus from the lung of a 
cow which had died of peripneumonia, by means of tubes 
previously sterilized; it was injected, with every precaution 
linst alteration, under the skin of the tail of the animal, 
this part being chosen on account of the thickness of the skin 
and of the cellular tissue. By operating on other pa: 
serious accidents were apt to occur, the virus being extremely 

1882—1884 129 

violent, so much so in fact that the local irritation sometimes 
went so far as to cause the loss of part of the tail. At the end 
of the same year (1882), Pasteur published in the Recueil de la 
Medecine Veterinaire a paper indicating the following means 
of preserving the virus in a state of purity— 

' Pure virus remains virulent for weeks and months. One 
lung is sufficient to provide large quantities of it, and its purity 
can easily be tested in a stove and even in ordinary tem- 
perature. From one lung only, enough can be procured to 
be used for many animals. Moreover, without having recourse 
to additional lungs, the provision of virus could be maintained 
in the following manner; it would suffice, before exhausting 
the first stock of virus, to inoculate a young calf behind the 
shoulder. Death speedily supervenes, and all the tissues are 
infiltrated with a serosity, which in its turn becomes virulent. 
This also can be collected and preserved in a state of purity." 
It remained to be seen whether virus thus preserved would 
become so attenuated as to lose all degree of virulence. 

Aubenas, then, wished to follow the example of Melun. In 
deference to the unanimous wish of the inhabitants of the 
little town, Pasteur went there on the 4th of May. His arrival 
was a veritable triumph ; there were decorations at the station, 
floral arches in the streets, brass and other bands, speeches 
from the Mayor, presentation of the Municipal Council, of 
the Chamber of Commerce, etc., etc. Excitement reigned 
everywhere, and the music of the bands was almost drowned 
by the acclamations of the people. At the meeting of the 
Agricultural Society, Pasteur was offered a medal with his 
own effigy, and a work of art representing genii around a cup, 
their hands full of cocoons. A little microscope— that micro- 
scope which had been called an impracticable instrument, fit 
for scientists only— figured as an attribute. 

'For us all," said the President of the Aubenas Spinning 
Syndicate, "you have been the kindly magician whose inter- 
vention conjured away the scourge which threatened us; in 
you we hail our benefactor." 

Pasteur, effacing his own personality as he had done at the 
Academie, laid all this enthusiasm and gratitude as an offering 
to Science. 

"I am not its object, but rather a pretext for it," he said, 
and continued : ' Science has been the ruling passion of my • 
life. I have lived but for Science, and in the hours of difficulty 


which are inherent to protracted efforts, the thought of France 
upheld ray courage. I associated her greatness with the great- 
ness of Science. 

' By erecting a statue to Olivier de Serres, the illustrious 
eon of the Vivarais, you give to France a noble example; you 
Bhow to all that you venerate great men and the great things 
they have accomplished. Therein lies fruitful seed ; you have 
gathered it. may your sons see it grow and fructify. I look 
back upon the time, already distant, when, desirous of respond- 
ing to the suggestions of a kind and illustrious friend, I left 
Paris to study in a neighbouring Department the scourge which 
was decimating your magnaiierics. For five years I struggled 
to obtain some knowledge of the evil and the means of pre- 
venting it; and, after having found it, I still had to struggle 
to implant in other minds the convictions I had aequir. 

' All that is past and gone now, and I can speak of it with 
moderation. I am not often credited with that characteristic, 

/and yet I am the most hesitating of men, the most fearful of 
responsibility, so long as I am not in possession of a proof. 
But when solid scientific proofs confirm my convictions, no 
consideration can prevent me from defending what I hold to 
be true. k 

"A man whose kindness to me was truly paternal (Biot) 
had for his motto : Per via* rectus. I congratulate myself that 
I borrowed it from him. If 1 had been more timid or more 
doubtful in view of the principles 1 ha 1 established, many 
points of science and of application might have remained 
obscure and subject to endless discussion. The hypothesis of 
spontaneous generation would still throw its veil over m 
questions. Your nurseries of silkworms would be under the 
ay of charlatanism, with no gu the production of good 

1. Tl ■ cination of charbon, destined to \ 
culture from immense losses, would be misunderstood and 
rejected as a dangerous practice. 

' Where are now all the contradictions? They pass away, 

• and Truth remains. After an interval of fifteen years, you 
now rendi r it a rmhle testimony. I therefore feel a deep joy 
in seeing my efforts understood and celebrated in an impulse 
of sympathy which will remain in my memory and in that of 
my family as a glorious recollection." 

itenr WSJ not allowed to return at once to his laboraf 
The agricultnrs ai nary surgeons of Nimes, who had 

1882—1884 131 

taken an interest in all the tests on the vaccination of charbon, 
had, in their turn, drawn up a programme of experiments. 

Pasteur arrived at a meeting of the Agricultural Society of 
the Gard in time to hear the report of the veterinary surgeons 
and to receive the congratulations of the Society. The 
President expressed to him the gratitude of all the cattle- 
owners and breeders, hitherto powerless to arrest the progress 
of the disease which he had now vanquished. Whilst a com- 
memoration medal was being offered to him and a banquet 
being prepared— for Southern enthusiasm always implies a 
series of toasts— Pasteur thanked these enterprising men who 
were contemplating new experiments in order to dispel the 
doubts of a few veterinary surgeons, and especially the 
characteristic distrust, felt by some of the shepherds of every- 
thing that did not come from the South. Sheep, oxen, and 
horses, some of them vaccinated, others intact, were put at 
Pasteur's disposal; he, with his usual energy, fixed the experi- 
ments for the next morning at eight o'clock. After inoculating 
all the animals with the charbon virus, Pasteur announced that 
those which had been vaccinated would remain unharmed, but 
that the twelve un vaccinated sheep would be dead or dying 
within forty-eight hours. An appointment was made for next 
day but one, on May 11, at the town knacker's, near the 
Bridge of Justice, where post-mortem examinations were made 
Pasteur then went on to Montpellier, where he was expected 
by the Herault Central Society of Agriculture, who had also 
made some experiments and had asked him to give a lecture 
at the Agricultural School, He entered the large hall, feeling 
very tired, almost ill, but his face lighted up at the 'sight of 
that assembly of professors and students who had hurried from 
all the neighbouring Faculties, and those agricultors crowding 
from every part of the Department, all of them either full of 
scientific curiosity or moved by their agricultural interests. 
His voice, at first weak and showing marks of weariness, soon 
became strengthened, and, forgetting his fatigue, he threw 
himself into the subject of virulent and contagious diseases 
He gave himself up, heart and soul, to this audience for two 
whole hours, inspiring every one with his own enthusiasm. ' 
He stopped now and then to invite questions, and his answers 
to the objectors swept away the last shred of resistance. 

" We must not," said the Vice-President of the Agricultural 
Society, M. Vialla, "encroach further on the time of M. 

A A 


Pasteur, which belongs to France itself. Perhaps, however 
he will allow me to prefer a last request : he has delivered us 
from the terrible scourge of splenic fever ; will he now turn to a 
no less redoubtable infection, viz. rot, which is, so to Bpeak, 
endemic in our regions? He will surely find the remedy 
for it." 

" I have hardly finished my experiments on splenic fever," 
answered Pasteur gently, " and you want me to find a remedy 
for rot! Why not for phylloxera as well?" And, while 
regretting that the days were not longer, he added, with the 
energy of which he had just given a new proof : " As to efforts, 
I am yours usque ad mortem." 

He afterwards was the honoured guest at the banquet pre- 
pared for him. It was now not only Sericiculture, but also 
Agriculture, which proclaimed its infinite gratitude to him ; he 
was given an enthusiastic ovation, in which, as usual, he saw 
no fame for himself, but for work and science only. 

On May 11, at nine o'clock in the morning, he was again at 
Nimes to meet the physicians, veterinary surgeons, cattle- 
breeders, and shepherds at the Bridge of Justice. Of the 
twelve sheep, six were already dead, the others dying; it was 
easy to see that their symptoms were the same as are charac- 
teristic of the ordinary splenic fever. " M. Pasteur gave all 
necessary explanations with his usual modesty and clearness." 
said the local papers. 

" And now let us go back to work! " exclaimed Pasteur, as 
he stepped into the Paris express ; he was impatient to return 
to his laboratory. 

In order to give him a mark of public gratitude greater still 
than that which came from this or th;it district, the Acad^mie 
des Sciences resolved to organize a general movement of 
Scientific Societies. It was decided to present him with a 
medal, e: 1 by Alphee Dubois, and bearing on one side 

Pasteur's profile and on the other the inscription : " To Louis 
Pasteur, his colle: his friends, and his admirers." 

On June 26, a Sunday, a delegation, headed by Pumas, and 
composed of Boussingault. Bonley, Janiin, Paubree, Bertin, 
Tisserand and Pavaine arrived at the Ecole Normale and found 
Pasteur in the midst of his family. 

" My dear Pasteur." said Pumas, in his deep voice, " forty 
years ago, you entered this building as a student. From the 

1882—1884 133 

very first, your masters foresaw that you would be an honour 
to it, but no one would have dared to predict the startling 
services which you were destined to render to science, France, 
and the world." 

And after summing up in a few words Pasteur's great career, 
the sources of wealth which he had discovered or revived, the 
benefits he had acquired to medicine and surgery : " My dear 
Pasteur," continued Dumas, with an affectionate emotion, 
' your life has known but success. The scientific method 
which you use in such a masterly manner owes you its greatest 
triumphs. The Ecole Normale is proud to number you 
amongst its pupils ; the Acad^mie des Sciences is proud of your 
work ; France ranks you amongst its glories. 

'At this time, when marks of public gratitude are flowing 
towards you from every quarter, the homage which we have 
come to offer you, in the name of your admirers and friends, 
may seem worthy of your particular attention. It emanates 
from a spontaneous and universal feeling, and it will preserve 
for posterity the faithful likeness of your features. 

' May you, my dear Pasteur, long live to enjoy your fame, 
and to contemplate the rich and abundant fruit of your work. 
Science, agriculture, industry, and humanity will preserve 
eternal gratitude towards you, and your name will live in their 
annals amongst the most illustrious and the most revered." 

Pasteur, standing with bowed head, his eyes full of tears, 
was for a few moments unable to reply, and then, making 
a violent effort, he said in a low voice — 

' My dear master — it is indeed forty years since I first had 
the happiness of knowing you, and since you first taught me 
to love science. 

1 1 was fresh from the country; after each of your classes, 
I used to leave the Sorbonne transported, often moved to tears. 
From that moment, your talent as a professor, your immortal 
labours and your noble character have inspired me with an* 
admiration which has but grown with the maturity of my mind. 

' You have surely guessed my feelings, my dear master. 
There has not been one important circumstance in my life or 
in that of my family, either happy or painful, which you have 
not, as it were, blessed by your presence and sympathy. 

" Again to-day, you take the foremost rank in the expres- 
sion of that testimony, very excessive, I think, of the esteem 
of my masters, who have become my friends. And what you 

A A 2 


have done for me, you have done for all your pupils; it is one 
of the distinctive traits of your nature. Behind the individual, 
you have always considered France and her greatness. 

" What shall I do henceforth? Until now, great praise had 
inflamed my ardour, and only inspired me with the idea of 
making myself worthy of it by renewed efforts ; but that which 
you have just given me in the names of the Academie and of 
the Scientific Societies is in truth beyond my courage." 

Pasteur, who for a year had been applauded by the crowd, 
received on that June 25, 1882, the testimony which he rated 
above every other : praise from his master. 

Whilst he recalled the beneficent influence which Dumas 
had had over him, those who were sitting in his drawing-room 
at the Ecole Normale were thinking that Dumas might have 
evoked similar recollections with similar charm. He too had 
known enthusiasms which had illumined his youth. In 1822, 
the very year when Pasteur was born, Dumas, who was then 
living in a student's attic at Geneva, received the visit of a 
man about fifty, dressed Directoire fashion, in a light blue coat 
with steel buttons, a white waistcoat and yellow breeches. It 
was Alexander von Humboldt, who had wished, on his way 
through Geneva, to see the young man who, though only 
twenty-two years old, had just published, in collaboration with 
Prevost, treatises on blood and on urea. That visit, the long 
conversations, or rather the monologues, of Humboldt had 
inspired Dumas with the feelings of surprise, pride, gratitude 
and devotion with which the first meeting with a great man 
is wont to fill the heart of an enthusiastic youth. When Dumas 
heard Humboldt speak of Laplace, Berthollet, Gay-Lussac, 
Arago, Thenard, Cuvier, etc., and describe them as familiarly 
accessible, instead of as the awe-inspiring personages he had 
imagined, Dumas became possessed with the idea of going to 
Paris, knowing those men, living near them and imbibing their 
methods. ' On the day wheD Humboldt left Geneva," Dumas 
used to say. "the town for me became empty." It was thus 
that Dumas' journey to Paris was decided on, and his dazzling 
career of sixty years begun. 

He was now near the end of his scientific career, closing 
peacefully like a beautiful summer evening, and he was happy 
in the fame of his former pupil. As he left the Ecole Normale, 
on that June afternoon, he passed under the windows of the 
laboratory, where a fev young men, imbued with Pasteur's 

1882—1884 135 

doctrines, represented a future reserve for the progress of 


That year 1882 was the more interesting in Pasteur's life 
in that though victory on many points was quite indisputable' 
partial struggles still burst out here and there, and an adversary 
often arose suddenly when he had thought the engagement over 

I he sharpest attacks came from Germany. The Eecord of 
the Works of the German Sanitary Office had led, under the 
direction of Dr. Koch and his pupils, a veritable campaign 
against Pasteur, whom they declared incapable of cultivating 
microbes in a state of purity. He did not even, they said 
know how to recognize the septic vibrio, though he had dis- 
covered it. The experiments by which hens contracted splenic 
fever under a lowered temperature after inoculation signified 
nothing. The share of the earthworms in the propagation of 
charbon, the inoculation into guinea-pigs of the germs found 
in the little cylinders produced by those worms followed by 
he death of the guinea-pigs, all this they said was pointless and 
laughable. They even contested the preserving influence of 

Whilst these things were being said and written, the Veter- 
inary School of Berlin asked the laboratory of the Ecole 
Normale for some charbon vaccine. Pasteur answered that 
he wished that experiments should be made before a com- 
mission nominated by the German Government. It was con 
stituted by the Minister of Agriculture and Forests and 
\ irchow was one of the members of it. A former student of 
the Ecole Normale-who, after leaving the school first on 
the list of competitors for the agregatwn of physical science, 
had entered the laboratory-one in whom Pasteur founded 
many hopes Thuillier, left for Germany with his little tubes 
of attenuated virus. Pasteur was not satisfied ; he would have 
liked to meet his adversaries face to face and oblige them 
publicly to own their defeat. An opportunity was soon to arise 
He had come to Arbois, as usual, for the months of August and 
September, and was having some alterations made in his little 
house. The tannery pits were being filled up. "It will not 
improve the house itself," he wrote to his son, " but it will be 
made brighter and more comfortable by having a tidy yard and 
a garden along the riverside." 
The Committee of the International Congress of Hygiene 


which was to meet at Geneva, interrupted these peaceful 
holidays by inviting Pasteur to read a paper on attenuated 
virus. As a special compliment, the whole of one meeting, 
that of Tuesday, September 5, was to be reserved for his 
paper only. Pasteur immediately returned to work ; he only 
consented under the greatest pressure to go for a short walk 
on the Besancon road at five o'clock every afternoon. After 
spending the whole morning and the whole afternoon sitting at 
his writing table over laboratory registers, he came away 
grumbling at being disturbed in his work. If any member of 
his family ventured a question on the proposed paper, he hastily 
cut them short, declaring that he must be let alone. It was 
only when Mme. Pasteur had copied out in her clear hand- 
writing all the little sheets covered with footnotes, that the con- 
tents of the paper became known. 

When Pasteur entered the Congress Hall, great applause 
greeted him on every side. The seats were occupied, not only 
by the physicians and professors who form the usual audience 
of a congress, but also by tourists, who take an interest in 
scientific things when they happen to be the fashion. 
j Pasteur spoke of the invitation he had received. ' I hastened 
to accept it," he said, "and I am pleased to find myself the 
guest of a country which has been a friend to France in good 
as in evil days. Moreover. 1 hoped to meet here some of the 
contradictors of my work of the last few years. If a congress 
is a ground for conciliation, it is in the same degree a ground 
for courteous discussion. We all are actuated by a supreme 
passion, that of progress and of truth. 't 

Almost always, at the opening of a congress, great politeness 
reigns in a confusion of languages. Men are seen offering each 
other pamphlets, exchanging visiting cards, and only lending 
an inattentive ear to the solemn speeches going on. This 
time, the first scene of the first act suspended all private con- 
versation. Pasteur stood above the assembly in his full 
strength and glory. Though he was almost sixty, his hair had 
remained black, his beard alone was turning grey. His face 
reflected indomitable energy ; if he had not been slightly lame, 
and if his left hand h.^1 not been a little stiff, no one could 
have supposed that he had been struck with paralysis fourteen 
\. ars before. The feeling of the place France should hold in 
an International Congress gave him a proud look and an impos- 
ing accent of authority. He was visibly ready to meet his 

1882—1884 137 

adversaries and to make of this assembly a tribunal of judges. 
Except for a few diplomats who at the first words exchanged 
anxious looks at the idea of possible polemics, Frenchmen felt 
happy at being better represented than any other nation. Men 
eagerly pointed out to each other Dr. Koch, twenty-one years 
younger than Pasteur, who sat on one of the benches, listening, 
with impassive eyes behind his gold spectacles. 

Pasteur analysed all the work he had done with the collabora- 
tion of MM. Chamberland, Eoux, and Thuillier. He made 
clear to the most ignorant among his hearers his ingenious 
experiments either to obtain, preserve or modify the virulence 
of certain microbes. " It cannot be doubted," he said, " that 
we possess a general method of attenuation. . . . The 
general principles are found, and it cannot be disbelieved that 
the future of those researches is rich with the greatest hopes. 
But, however obvious a demonstrated truth may be, it has not 
always the privilege of being easily accepted. I have met in 
France and elsewhere with some obstinate contradictors. 
. . . Allow me to choose amongst them the one whose per- 
sonal merit gives him the greatest claims to our attention, I 
mean Dr Koch, of Berlin." 

Pasteur then summed up the various criticisms which had 
appeared in the Record of the Works of the German Sanitary 
Office. "Perhaps there may be some persons in this 
assembly," he went on, "who share the opinions of my con- 
tradictors. They will allow me to invite them to speak ; I 
should be happy to answer them." 
ij/ Koch, mounting the platform, declined to discuss the subject, 
preferring, he said, to make answer in writing later on. Pasteur 
was disappointed; he would have wished the Congress, or at 
least a Commission designated by Koch, to decide on the 
experiments. He resigned himself to wait. On the following 
days, as the members of the Congress saw him attending 
meetings on general hygiene, school hygiene, and veterinary 
hygiene, they hardly recognized in the simple, attentive man, 
anxious for instruction, the man who had defied his adversary. 
Outside the arena, Pasteur became again the most modest of 
men, never allowing himself to criticize what he had not 
thoroughly studied. But, when sure of his facts, he showed 
himself full of a violent passion, the passion of truth ■ when 
truth had triumphed, he preserved not the least bitterness of 
former struggles.^ 


That day of the 5th September was remembered in Geneva. 
"All the honour was for France," wrote Pasteur to his son; 
" that was what I had wished." 

He was already keen in the pursuit of another malady which 
caused great damage, the " rouget " disease or swine fever. 
Thuillier, ever ready to start when a demonstration had to be 
made or an experiment to be attempted, had ascertained, in 
March, 1882, in a part of the Department of the Vienne, the 
existence of a microbe in the swine attacked with that disease. 

In order to know whether this microbe was the cause of the 
evil, the usual operations of the sovereign method had to be 
resorted to. First of all, a culture medium had to be found 
which was suitable to the micro-organism (veal broth was found 
to be very successful) ; then a drop of the culture had to be 
abstracted from the little phials where the microbe was develop- 
ing and sown into other flasks ; lastly the culture liquid had to 
be inoculated into swine. Death supervened with all the 
symptoms of swine fever ; the microbe was therefore the cause 
of the evil? Could it be attenuated and a vaccine obtained? 
Being pressed to study that disease, and to find the remedy for 
it, by M. Maucuer, a veterinary surgeon of the Department 
of Vaucluse, living at Bollene, Pasteur started, accompanied 
by his nephew, Adrien Loir, and M. Thuillier. The three 
arrived at Bollene on September 13. 

"It is impossible to imagine more obliging kindness than 
that of those excellent Maucuers," wrote Pasteur to his wife 
the next day. ' Where, in what dark corner they sleep, in 
order to give us two bedrooms, mine and another with two 
beds, I do not like to think. They are young, and have 
eight-year-old son at the Avignon College, for whom they have 
obtained a half-holiday to-day in order that he may be presented 
to ' M. Pasteur.' The two men and I arc taken care of in a 
manner you might envy. It is colder here and more rainy 
than in Paris. I have a Die in my room, that green oak-wood 
fire that you will remember we had at the Pont Gisquet. 

" I was much pleased to hear that the swine fever is far from 
being extinguished. There are sick swine everywhere, some 
dying, some dead, at Bollene and in the country around; the 
evil is disastrous this year. We saw some dead and dying 
yesterday afternoon. We have brought here a young hog who 
is very ill, and this morning we shall attempt vaccination at a 

1882—1884 i 3 g 

M. de Ballincourt's, who has lost all his pigs, and who has 
just bought some more in the hope that the vaccine will be 
preservative. From morning till night we shall be able to 
watch the disease and to try to prevent it. This reminds me * 
of the purine, with pigsties and sick pigs instead of nurseries 
full of dying silkworms. Not ten thousand, but at least twenty 
thousand swine have perished, and I am told it is worse still in 
the Ardeche." 

On the 17th, the day was taken up by the inoculation of some 
pigs on the estate of M. de la Gardette, a few kilometres from 
Bollene. In the evening, a former State Councillor, M. de 
Gaillard, came at the head of a delegation to compliment 
Pasteur and invite him to a banquet. Pasteur declined this 
honour, saying he would accept it when the swine fever was 
conquered. They spoke to him of his past services, but he 
had no thought for them ; like all progress-seeking men, he saw 
but what was before him. Experiments were being carried out 
— he had hastened to have an experimental pigsty erected near 
M. Maucuer's house— and already, on the 21st, he wrote to 
Mine. Pasteur, in one of those letters which resembled the loose 
pages of a laboratory notebook — 

'Swine fever is not nearly so obscure to me now, and I 
am persuaded that with the help of time the scientific and 
practical problem will be solved. 

' Three post-mortem examinations to-day. They take a long 
time, but that seems o c no account to Thuillier, with his cool 
and patient eagerness." 

Three days later : " I much regret not being able to tell you 
yet that I am starting back for Paris. It is quite impossible 
to abandon all these experiments which we have commenced ; I 
should have to return here at least once or twice. The chief 
thing is that things are getting clearer with every experiment. 
i T ou know that nowadays a medical knowledge of disease is 
nothing ; it must be prevented beforehand. We are attempting 
this, and I think I can foresee success ; but keep this for your- 
self and our children. I embrace you all most affectionately. 

' P.S.— I have never felt better. Send me 1,000 fr. ; I have 
but 300 fr. left of the 1,600 fr. I brought. Pigs are expensive, ' 
and we are killing a great many." 

At last on December 3 : "lam sending M. Dumas a note 
for to-morrow's meeting at the Academy. If I had time I 
would transcribe it for the laboratory and for KeneV' 


" Our researches " — thus ran the report to the Academy— 
" may be summed up in the following propositions — 

"I. The swine fever, or rouget disease, is produced by a 
special microbe, easy to cultivate outside the animal's body. It 
is so tiny that it often escapes the most attentive search. It 
resembles the microbe of chicken cholera more than any other ; 
its shape is also that of a figure 8, but finer and less visible 
than that of the cholera. It differs essentially from the latter 
by its physiological properties; it kills rabbits and sheep, but 
has no effect on hens. 

'II. If inoculated in a state of purity into pigs, in almost 
inappreciable doses, it speedily brings the fever and death, 
with all the characteristics usual in spontaneous cases. It is 
most deadly to the white, so-called improved, race, that which 
is most sought after by pork-breeders. 

"III. Dr. Klein published in London (1878) an extensive 
work on swine fever which he calls Pneumo-enteritis of Sicine ; 
but that author is entirely mistaken as to the nature of the 
parasite. He has described as the microbe of the rouget a 
bacillus with spores, more voluminous even than the bacteri- 
dium of splenic fever. Dr. Klein's microbe is very different 
from the true microbe of swine fever, and has, besides, no 
relation to the etiology of that disease. 

"IV. After having satisfied ourselves by direct tests that 
the malady does not recur, we have succeeded in inoculating in 
in a benignant form, after which the animal has proved refrac- 
tory to the mortal disease. 

" V. Though we consider that further control experiments 
are necessary, we have already great confidence in this, that, 
dating from next spring, vaccination by the virulent microbe of 
swine fever, attenuated, will become the salvation of pigsties.*' 

Pasteur ended thus his letter of December 3 : " We shall 
etart to-morrow, Monday. Adrien Loir and I shall sleep at 
Lyons. Thuillier will go straight to Paris, to take care of ten 
little pigs which we have bought, and which he will take with 
him. In this way they will not be kept waiting at stations. 
Pigs, young and old, are very sensitive to cold; they will be 
wrapped up in straw. They are very young and quite charm- 
ing ; one cannot help getting fond of them." 

The next day Pasteur wrote to his son : " Everything has 
gone off well, and we much hope, Thuillier and I, that pre- 
ventive vaccination of this evil can be established in a practical 

1882—1884 141 

fashion. It would be a great boon in pork-breeding countries, 
where terrible ravages are made by the rouget (so called because 
the animals die covered with red or purple blotches, already 
developed during the fever which precedes death). In the 
United States, over a million swine died of this disease in 1879 ; 
it rages in England and in Germany. This year, it has 
desolated the C6tes-du-Nord, the Poitou, and the departments 
of the Rhone Valley. I sent to M. Dumas yesterday a resume 
in a few lines of our results, to be read at to-day's meeting." 

Pasteur, once more in Paris, returned eagerly to his studies 
on divers virus and on hydrophobia. If he was told that he 
over- worked himself, he replied : " It would seem to me that I 
was committing a theft if I were to let one day go by without 
doing some work." But he was again disturbed in the work 
he enjoyed by the contradictions of his opponents 

Koch's reply arrived soon after the Bollene episode. The 
German scientist had modified his views to a certain extent ; 
instead of denying the attenuation of virus as in 1881, he now 
proclaimed it as a discovery of the first order. But he did not 
believe much, he said, in the practical results of the vaccination 
of charbon. 

Pasteur put forward, in response, a report from the veterinary 
surgeon Boutet to the Chartres Veterinary and Agricultural 
School, made in the preceding October. The sheep vaccinated 
in Eure et Loir during the last year formed a total of 79,392. 
Instead of a mortality which had been more than nine per cent. 
on the average in the last ten years, the mortality had only 
been 518 sheep, much less than one per cent ; 5,700 sheep had 
therefore been preserved by vaccination. Amongst cattle 4,562 
animals had been vaccinated ; out of a similar number 300 
usually died every year. Since vaccination, only eleven cows 
had died. 

' Such results appear to us convincing," wrote M. Boutet. 
' If our cultivators of the Beauce understand their own interest, 
splenic fever and malignant pustules will soon remain a mere 
memory, for charbon diseases never are spontaneous, and, by 
preventing the death of their cattle by vaccination, they will 
destroy all possibility of propagation of that terrible disease, 
which will in consequence entirely disappear." 

Koch continued to smile at the discovery on the earthworms' 
action in the etiology of anthrax. "You are mistaken, Sir," 
replied Pasteur. ' You are again preparing for yourself a 


vexing change of opinion." And he concluded as follow? . 
" However violent your attacks, Sir, they will not hinder the 
success of the method of attenuated virus. I am confidently 
awaiting the consequences which it holds in reserve to help 
humanity in its struggle against the diseases which assault it." 

This debate was hardly concluded when new polemics arose 
at the Academie de Medecine. A new treatment of typhoid 
fever was under discussion. 

In 1870, M. Glenard, a Lyons medical student, who had 
enlisted, was, with many others, taken to Stettin as prisoner 
of war. A German physician, Dr. Brand, moved with com- 
passion by the sufferings of the vanquished French soldiers, 
showed them great kindness and devotion. The French 
student attached himself to him, helped him with his work, 
and saw him treat typhoid fever with success by baths at 20° C. 
Brand prided himself on this cold-bath treatment, which pro- 
duced numerous cures. M. Glenard, on his return to Lyons, 
remembering with confidence this method of which he had seen 
the excellent results, persuaded the physician of the Croix 
Pousse hospital, where he resided, to attempt the same treat- 
ment. This was done for ten years, and nearly all the Lyons 
practitioners became convinced that Brand's method was 
efficacious. M. Glenard came to Paris and read to the 
Academy of Medicine a paper on the cold-bath treatment of 
typhoid fever. The Academy appointed a commission, com- 
posed of civil and military physicians, and the discussion was 

The oratorical display which had struck Pasteur when he 
first came to the Academie de Medecine was much to the fore 
on that occasion ; the merely curious hearers of that discussion 
had an opportunity of enjoying medical eloquence, besides 
acquiring information on the new treatment of typhoid fever. 
There were some vehement denunciations of the microbe which 
was suspected in typhoid fever. ' You aim at the microbe and 
you bring down the patient! " exclaimed one of the orators, 
who added, t groat applause, that it was time " to offer 

an impassable barrier to such adventurous boldness and thus 
to preserve patients from the unforeseen dangers of that 
therapeutic whirlwind ! " 

Another orator took up a lighter tone : "I do not much 
believe in that invasion of parasites which threatens us like 
an eleventh plague of Egypt," said M. Peter. And attacking 

1882—1884 143 

the scientists who meddled with medicine, chymiasters as he 
called them, "They have come to this," he said, "that in 
typhoid fevers they only see the typhoid fever, in typhoid fever, 
fever only, and in fever, increased heat. They have thus 
reached that luminous idea that heat must be fought by cold. 
This organism is on fire, let us pour water over it; it is a 
fireman's doctrine." 

Vulpian, whose grave mind was not unlike Pasteur's, inter- 
vened, and said that new attempts should not be discouraged 
by sneers. Without pronouncing on the merits of the cold-bath 
method, which he had not tried, he looked beyond this dis- 
cussion, indicating the road which theoretically seemed to him 
to lead to a curative treatment. The first thing was to discover 
the agent which causes typhoid fever, and then, when that 
was known, attempt to destroy or paralyse it in the tissues of 
typhoid patients, or else to find drugs capable either of pre- 
venting the aggressions of that agent or of annihilating the 
effects of that aggression, "to produce, relatively to typhoid 
fever, the effect determined by salicylate of soda in acute rheu- 
matism of the articulations." 

Beyond the restricted audience, allowed a few seats in the 
Academie de Medecine, the general public itself was taking an 
interest in this prolonged debate. The very high death rate 
in the army due to typhoid fever was the cause of this eager 
attention. Whilst the German army, where Brand's method 
was employed, hardly lost five men out of a thousand, the 
French army lost more than ten per thousand. 

Whilst military service was not compulsory, epidemics in 
barracks were looked upon with more or less compassionate 
attention. But the thought that typhoid fever had been more 
destructive within the last ten years than the most sanguinary 
battle now awakened all minds and hearts. Is then personal 
fear necessary to awaken human compassion ? 

Bouley, who was more given to propagating new doctrines 
than to lingering on such philosophical problems, thought it 
was time to introduce into the debate certain ideas on the great 
problems tackled by medicine since the discovery of what 
might be called a fourth kingdom in nature, that of microbia. 
In a statement read at the Academie de Medecine, he formu- 
lated in broad lines the role of the infinitesimally small and 
their activity in producing the phenomena of fermentations and 
diseases. He showed by the parallel works of Pasteur on the 


one hand, and M. Chauveau on the other, that contagion is the 
function of a living element. ' It is especially," said Bouley, 
"on the question of the prophylaxis of virulent diseases that 
the microbian doctrine has given the most marvellous results. 
To seize upon the most deadly virus, to submit them to a 
methodical culture, to cause modifying agents to act upon them 
in a measured proportion, and thus to succeed in attenuating 
them in divers degrees, so as to utilise their strength, reduced 
but still efficacious, in transmitting a benignant malady by 
means of which immunity is acquired against the deadly 
disease : what a beautiful dream ! ! And M. Pasteur has made 
that dream into a reality ! ! ! . . ." 

The debate widened, typhoid fever became a mere incident. 
The pathogenic action of the innnitesimally small entered into 
the discussion ; traditional medicine faced microbian medicine. 
M. Peter rushed once more to the front rank for the fight. He 
declared that he did not apply the term chymiastcr to Pasteur ; 
he recognized that it was but "fair to proclaim that we owe 
to M. Pasteur's researches the most useful practical applica- 
tions in surgery and in obstetrics." But considering thai 
medicine might claim more independence, he repeated that 
the discovery of the material elements of virulent diseases did 
not throw so much light as had been said, either on pathological 
anatomy, on the evolution, on the treatment or especially on 
the prophylaxis of virulent diseases. " Those are but natural 
history curiosities," he added, " interesting no doubt, but of 
very little profit to medicine, and not worth either the time 
given to them or the noise made about them. After so many 
laborious researches, nothing will be changed in medicine, 
there will only be a few more microbes." 

A newspaper having repeated this last sentence, a professor 
of the Faculty of Medicine, M. Cornil, simply recalled how, 
at the time when the acarus of itch had been discovered, many 
Partisans of old doctrines had probably exclaimed, " What is 
your acarus to me? Will it teach me more thin I know 
already?" " But," added M. Cornil, " the physician who had 
understood the value of that discovery no longer inflicted 
internal medication upon his patients to cure them of what 
seemed an inveterate disease, but merely cured them by means 
of a brush and a little ointment." 

M. Peter, continuing his violent speech, quoted certain vac- 
cination failures, and incompletely reported experiments, say- 

1882—1884 145 

ing, grandly : " M. Pasteur's excuse is that he is a chemist, 
who has tried, out of a wish to be useful, to reform medicine, 
to which he is a complete stranger. . . . 

"In the struggle I have undertaken the present discussion 
is but a skirmish ; but, to judge from the reinforcements which 
are coming to me, the milee may become general, and victory 
will remain, I hope, to the larger battalions, that is to say, to 
the 'old medicine.' " 

Bouley, amazed that M. Peter should thus scout the notion 
of microbia introduced into pathology, valiantly fought this 
"skirmish" alone. He recalled the discussions a propos of 
tuberculosis, so obscure until a new and vivifying notion came 
to simplify the solution of the problem. " And you reject that 
solution! You say, ' What does it matter to me? ' . . . What! 
M. Koch, of Berlin— who with such discoveries as he has made 
might well abstain from envy— M. Koch points out to you the 
presence of bacteria in tubercles, and that seems to you of no 
importance? But that microbe gives you the explanation of 
those contagious properties of tuberculosis so well demonstrated 
by M. Villemin, for it is the instrument of virulence itself which 
is put under your eyes." 

Bouley then went on to refute the arguments of M. Peter 
epitomized the history of the discovery of the attenuation of 
virus, and all that this method of cultures possible in an extra- 
organic medium might suggest that was hopeful for a vaccine of 
cholera and of yellow fever, which might be discovered one day 
and protect humanity against those terrible scourges He con- 
cuded thus-" Let M. Peter do what I have done; let him 
study M. Pasteur, and penetrate thoroughly into all that ia 
admirable, through the absolute certainty of the results in 
the long series of researches which have led him from 'the 
discovery of ferments to that of the nature of virus ; and 
then I can assure him that instead of decrying this great 
glory of France, of whom we must all be proud, he too 
will feel himself carried away by enthusiasm and will 
bow with admiration and respect before the chemist, who, 
tnough not a physician, illumines medicine and dispels, in 
the light of his experiments, a darkness which had hitherto 
remained impenetrable." 

A year before this (Peter had not failed to report the fact) 
an experiment of anthrax vaccination had completely failed at 
the Turin Veterinary School. All the sheep, vaccinated and 


non-vaccinated, had succumbed subsequently to the inoculation 
of the blood of a sheep which had died of charbon. 

This took place in March, 1882. As 60on as Pasteur heard 
of this extraordinary fiasco, which seemed the counterpart of 
Pouilly-le-Fort experiment, he wrote on April 16 to the 
director of the Turin Veterinary School, asking on what day 
the sheep had died the blood of which had been used for the 
virulent inoculation. 

The director answered simply that the sheep had died on the 
morning of March 22, and that its blood had been inoculated 
during the course of the following day. 'There has been," 
said Pasteur, " a grave scientific mistake ; the blood inoculated 
was septic as well as full of charbon." 

Though the director of the Turin Veterinary School affirmed 
that the blood had been carefully examined and that it was in 
no wise septic, Pasteur looked back on his 1877 experiments 
on anthrax and septicaemia, and maintained before the Paris 
Central Veterinary Society on June 8, 1882, that the Turin 
School had done wrong in using the blood of an animal at b 
twenty-four hours after its death, for the blood must have been 
septic besides containing anthrax. The six professors of the 
Turin School protested unanimously against such an interpre- 
tation. " We hold it marvellous," they wrote ironically, " that 
your Illustrious Lordship should have recognized so surely, 
from Paris, the disease which made such havoc amongst the 
animals vaccinated and non-vaccinated and inoculat* d with 
blood containing anthrax in our school on March 23, 18K 

' It does not seem to us possible that a scientist should 
affirm the existence of septicaemia in an animal he has not even 
seen. . . ." 

The quarrel with the Turin School had now lasted a year. 
On April 9, 1883, Pasteur appealed to the Academy of Scien 
to judge of the Turin incident and to put an end to this agita- 
tion, which threatened to cover truth with a veil. He read out 
the letter he had just addressed to the Turin professors. 

" Gentlemen, a dispute having arisen between you and 
myself respecting the interpretation to be given to the absolut. 
failure of your control experiment of March 23, 1882. I have 
the honour to inform you that, if you will accept the suggestion. 
I will go to Turin any day you may choose ; you shall inocui 
in my presence some virulent charbon into any number of 
sheep you like. The exact moment of death in each case shall 

1882—1884 147 

be determined, and I will demonstrate to you that in every 
case the blood of the corpse containing only charbon at the first 
will also be septic on the next day. It will thus be established 
with absolute certainty that the assertion formulated by me on 
June 8, 1882, against which you have protested on two occa- 
sions, arises, not as you say, from an arbitrary opinion, but 
from an immovable scientific principle ; and that I have 
legitimately affirmed from Paris the presence of septicaemia 
without it being in the least necessary that I should have seen 
the corpse of the sheep you utilized for your experiments. 

" Minutes of the facts as they are produced shall be drawn 
up day by day, and signed by the professors of the Turin 
Veterinary School and by the other persons, physicians or 
veterinary surgeons, who may have been present at the experi- 
ments ; these minutes will then be published both at the 
Academies of Turin and of Paris." 

Pasteur contented himself with reading this letter to the 
Academy of Sciences. For months he had not attended the 
Academy of Medicine ; he was tired of incessant and barren 
struggles ; he often used to come away from the discussions 
worn out and excited. He would say to Messrs. Chamberland 
and Eoux, who waited for him after the meetings, " How is it 
that certain doctors do not understand the range, the value, of 
our experiments? How is it that they do not foresee the great 
future of all these studies? " 

The day after the Academie des Sciences meeting, judging 
that his letter to Turin sufficiently closed the incident, Pasteur 
started for Arbois. He wanted to set up a laboratory adjoining 
his house. Where the father had worked with his hands, the 
son would work at his great light-emitting studies. 

On April 3 a letter from M. Peter had been read at the 
Academy of Medicine, declaring that he did not give up the 
struggle and that nothing would be lost by waiting. 

At the following sitting, another physician, M. Fauvel, while 
declaring himself an admirer of Pasteur's work and full of 
respect for his person, thought it well not to accept blindly 
all the inductions into which Pasteur might find himself drawn, 
and to oppose those which were contradictory to acquired facts. 
After M. Fauvel, M. Peter violently attacked what he called 
"microbicidal drugs which may become homicidal," he said. 
When reading the account of this meeting, Pasteur had an 
impulse of anger. His resolutions not to return to the 

b B 


Academy of Medicine gave way before the desire not to leave 
Bouley alone to lead the defensive oampaign ; he started for 

As his family was then at Arbois, and the doors of his fi- 
at the Ecole Normale closed, the simplest thing for Pasteur 
was to go to the Hotel du Louvre, accompanied by a member 
of his family. The next morning he carefully prepared his 
speech, and, at three o'clock in the afternoon, he entered the 
Academy of Medicine. The President, M. Hardy, welcomed 
him in these words — " Allow me, before you begin to speak, 
to tell you that it is with great pleasure that we see you once 
in among us, and that the Academy hopes that, now that 
you have once more found your way to its precincts, you will 
not forget it again." 

After isolating and rectifying the points of discussion, 
Pasteur advised M. Peter to make a more searching inquiry 
into the subject of anthrax vaccination, and to trust to Time, 
the only sovereign judge. Should not the recollection of the 
violent hostility encountered at first by Jenner put people on 
their guard against hasty judgments? There was not one of 
the doctors present who could not remember what had been 
written at one time against vaccination ! ! ! 

He went on to oppose the false idea that each science should 
restrict itself within its own limitations. ' What do I, a phy- 
sician, says M. Peter, want with the minds of the chemist, 
. the physicist and the physiologist? 

" On hearing him speak with 60 much disdain of the chemists 
and physiologists who touch upon questions of disease, you 
might verily think that he is speaking in the name of a science 
whose principles are founded on a rock ! Does he want proofs 
of the slow progress of therapeutics? It is now six months 
since, in this assembly of the greatest medical men, the 
question was discussed whether it is better to treat typhoid 
fever with cold lotions or with quinine, with alcohol or salicylic 
acid, or even not to treat it at all. 

" And, when we are perhaps on the eve of solving the ques- 
tion of the etiology of that disease by a microbe, M. Peter 
commits the medical blasphemy of saying, ' What do your 

microbes matter to me? It will only be one microbe the 

!i » • 

Amazed that sarcasm should be levelled against new studies 
which opened such wide horizons, he denounced the flippancy 

1882—1884 149 

with which a professor of the Faculty of Medicine allowed him- 
self to speak of vaccinations by attenuated virus. 

He ended by rejoicing once more that this great discovery 
should have been a French one. 

Pasteur went back to Arbois for a few days. On his return 
to Paris, he was beginning some new experiments, when he 
received a long letter from the Turin professors. Instead of 
accepting his offer, they enumerated their experiments, asked 
some questions in an offended and ironical manner, and con- 
cluded by praising an Italian national vaccine, which produced 
absolute immunity in the future — when it did not kill. 

"They cannot get out of this dilemma," said Pasteur; ~ 
"either they knew my 1877 notes, unravelling the contra- 
dictory statements of Davaine, Jaillard and Leplat, and Paul 
Bert, or they did not know them. If they did not know them 
on March 22, 1S82, there is nothing more to say; they were 
not guilty in acting as they did, but they should have owned it 
freely. If they did know them, why ever did they inoculate 
blood taken from a sheep twenty -four hours after its death? 
They say that this blood was not septic ; but how do they know? 
They have done nothing to find out. They should have inocu- 
lated some guinea-pigs, by choice, and then tried some cultures 
in a vacuum to compare them with cultures in contact with 
air. Why will they not receive me? A meeting between*-' 
truth-seeking men would be the most natural thing in the <- 
world ! " 

Still hoping to persuade his adversaries to meet him at Turin 
and be convinced, Pasteur wrote to them. "Paris, May 9, 
1883. Gentlemen— Your letter of April 30 surprises me very 
much. What is in question between you and me? That I 
should go to Turin, if you will allow me, to demonstrate that 
sheep, dead of charbon, as numerous as you like, will, for a 
few hours after their death, be exclusively infected with 
anthrax, and that the day after their death they will present 
both anthrax and septic infection ; and that therefore, when, on 
March 23, 1882, wishing to inoculate blood infected with 
anthrax only into sheep vaccinated and non-vaccinated, you 
took blood from a carcase twenty-four hours after death, you 
committed a grave scientific mistake. 

'Instead of answering yes or no, instead of saying to me 
' Come to Turin,' or ' Do not come,' you ask me, in a manu- 

B B 2 


script letter of seventeen pages, to send you from Paris, in writ- 
ing, preliminary explanations of all that I should have to 
demonstrate in Turin. 

"Really, what is the good? Would not that lead to 
endless discussions? It is because of the uselcssness of 
a written controversy that I have placed myself at your 

" I have once more the honour of asking you to inform me 
whether you accept the proposal made to you on April 9. that I 
should go to Turin to place before your eyes the proofs of the 
facts I have just mentioned. 

" P.S. — In order not to complicate the debate, I do not dwell 
upon the many erroneous quotations and statements contained 
in your letter." 

M. Rous began to prepare an interesting curriculum of 
experiments to be carried out at Turin. But the Turin pro- 
fessors wrote a disagreeable letter, published a little pamphlet 
entitled Of the Scientific Dogmatism of the Illustrious 
Professor Pasteur, and things remained as they were. 

All these discussions, renewed on so many divers points, were 
not altogether a waste of time ; some of them bore fruitful 
results by causing most decisive proofs to be sought for. ]t 
has also made the path of Pasteur's followers wider and 
smoother that he himself should have borne the brunt of the 
first opposition. 

In the meanwhile, testimonials of gratitude continued to 
pour in from the agrieultors and veterinary surgeons who had 
seen the results of two years' practice of the vaccination e 

Id the year 1882, 613,740 sheep and 88,946 oxen had I 
vaccinated. The Department of the Cantal which had before 
lost about 3,000,000 fr. every year, desired in June. 1883. on 
the occasion of an agricultural show, to give M. Pasteur a 
special acknowledgement of their gratitude. It consisted of 
a cup of silver-plated bronze, ornamented with a group of 
cattle. Behind the group -imitating in this the town of 
Aubenas, who had made a microscope figure as an attribute of 
honour—'- presented, in small proportions, an instrun 

which found itself for the first time raised to such an exall 
position, the little syringe used for inoculations. 

Pasteur was much pressed to come himself and receive this 
ottering from a laud which would henceforth owe its fortune to 

1882—1884 151 

him. He allowed himself to be persuaded, and arrived, accom- 
panied as usual by his family. 

The Mayor, surrounded by the municipal councillors, greeted 
him in these words : " Our town of Aurillac is very small, and 
you will not find here the brilliant population which inhabits 
great cities ; but you will find minds capable of understand- 
ing the scientific and humanitarian mission which you have so 
generously undertaken. You will also find hearts capable of 
appreciating your benefits and of preserving the memory of 
them ; your name has been on all our lips for a long time." 

Pasteur, visiting that local exhibition, did not resemble the 
official personages who listen wearily to the details given them 
by a staff of functionaries. He thought but of acquiring know- 
ledge, going straight to this or that exhibitor and questioning 
him, not with perfunctory politeness, but with a real desire 
for practical information ; no detail seemed to him insignificant. 
" Nothing should be neglected," he said ; " and a remark from 
a rough labourer who does well what he has to do is infinitely 

After visiting the products and agricultural implements, 
Pasteur was met in the street by a peasant who stopped and 
waved his large hat, shouting, "Long live Pasteur!" . . . 
" You have saved my cattle," continued the man, coming up 
to shake hands with him. 

Physicians in their turn desired to celebrate and to honour him 
who, though not a physician, had rendered such service to 
medicine. Thirty-two of them assembled to drink his health. 
The head physician of the Aurillac Hospital, Dr. Fleys, said in 
proposing the toast : " What the mechanism of the heavens 
owes to Newton, chemistry to Lavoisier, geology to Cuvier, 
general anatomy to Bichat, physiology to Claude Bernard,* 
pathology and hygiene will owe to Pasteur. Unite with me, 
dear colleagues, and let us drink to the fame of the illustrious 
Pasteur, the precursor of the medicine of the future, a bene- 
factor to humanity." 

This glorious title was now associated with his name. In the 
first rank of his enthusiastic admirers came the scientists, who, 
from the point of view of pure science, admired the achieve- 
ments, within those thirty-five years, of that great man whose 
perseverance equalled his penetration. Then came the manu- 
facturers, the sericicultors, and the agricultors, who owed their 


fortune to him who had placed every process he discovered 
into the public domain. Finally, 1 could quote the words 

of the English physiologist, Huxley, in a public lecture at the 
London Koyal Society : " Pasteur's discoveries alone would 
suffice to cover the war indemnity of five milliards paid by 
/ Franco to Germany in 1870." 

To that capital was added the inestimable price of human 
lives saved. Since the antiseptic method had been adopted 
in surgical operations, the mortality had fallen from 50 per 100 
to 5 per 100. 

Id the lying-in hospitals, more than decimated formerly (for 
the statistics had shown a death-rate of not only 100 but 200 
per 1,000), the number of fatalities was now reduced to 3 per 
1,000 and soon afterwards fell to 1 per 1,000. And, in conse- 
quence of the principles established by Pasteur, hygiene was 
growing, developing, and at last taking its proper place in the 
public view. So much progress accomplished had brought 
Pasteur a daily growing acknowledgment of gratitude, his 
country was more than proud of him. His powerful mind, 
allied with his very tender heart, had brought to French glory 
an aureole of chanty. 

The Government of the Republic remembered that England 
had voted two national rewards to Jenner, one in 1802 and one 
in 1807, the first of £10,000, and the second of £20,000. It 
was at the time of that deliberation that Pitt, the great orator, 
exclaimed, "Vote, gentlemen, your gratitude will never reach 
the amount of the service rendered." 

The French Ministry proj>osed to augment the 12,000 fr. pen- 
sion accorded to Pastenr in 1874 as a national recompense, and 
to make it 25,000 fr., to revert first to Pasteur's widow, and 
then to his children. A Commission was formed and Paul Bert 
again chosen to draw up the report. 

On several occasions at the meetings of the commission one 
of its members, Benjamin Baspail, exalted the parasitic theory 
propounds! in L848 by his own father. His filial pleading 
went so far as to accuse Pasteur of plagiarism. Paul Bert, 
whilst recognizing the share attributed by F. V. Baspail to 
microscopic beings, recalled the fact that his attempt in favour 
of epidemic and contagious diseases had not been adopted by 
scientists. ' Xo doubt." lie said, " the parasitic origin of the 
itch was now definitely accepted, thanks in a great measure 
to the efforts of Baspail; but generalizations were considered 

1882—1884 153 

as out of proportion to the fact they were supposed to rest on. 
It seemed excessive to conclude from the existence of the acarus 
of itch, visible to the naked eye or with the weakest magnifying 
glass, the presence of microscopic parasites in the humours 
of virulent diseases. . . . Such hypotheses can be considered 
but as a sort of intuition.'* 

" Hypotheses," said Pasteur, " come into our laboratories 
in armfuls ; they fill our registers with projected experiments, 
they stimulate us to research — and that is all." One thing , 
only counted for him : experimental verification. 

Paul Bert, in his very complete report, quoted Huxley's ,/ 
words to the Eoyal Society and Pitt's words to the House of 
Commons. He stated that since the first Bill had been voted, 
a new series of discoveries, no less marvellous from a theo- 
retical point of view and yet more important from a practical 
point of view, had come to strike the world of Science with 
astonishment and admiration." Recapitulating Pasteur's 
works, he said — 

' They may be classed in three series, constituting three 
great discoveries. 

' The first one may be formulated thus : Each fermentation 
is produced by the development of a special microbe. 

' The second one may be given this formula : Each infec- 
tious disease (those at least that M. Pasteur and his immediate 
followers have studied) is produced by the development within , 
the organism of a special microbe. 

' The third one may be expressed in this way : The microbe 
of an infectious disease, cultivated under certain detrimental 
conditions, is attenuated in its pathogenic activity ; from a virus 
it has become a vaccine. 

"As a practical consequence of the first discovery, M. 
Pasteur has given rules for the manufacture of beer and of 
vinegar, and shown how beer and wine may be preserved against 
secondary fermentations which would turn them sour, bitter or 
6limy, and which render difficult their transport and even their 
preservation on the spot. 

' As a practical consequence of the second discovery, M. 
Pasteur has given rules to be followed to preserve cattle from 
splenic fever contamination, and silkworms from the diseases 
which decimated them. Surgeons, on the other hand, have 
succeeded, by means of the guidance it afforded, in effecting 
almost completely the disappearance of erysipelas and of the 


purulent infections which formerly brought about the death of 
so many patients after operations. 

" As a practical consequence of the third discovery. M. 
Pasteur has <_ r iven rules for, and indeed has effected, the preser- 
vation of horses, oxen, and sheep from the anthrax disease 
which every year kills in France about 20,000,000 francs' 
worth. Swine will also be preserved from the rouget disease 
which decimates them, and poultry from the cholera which 
makes such terrible havoc among them. Everything leads us 
to hope that rabies will also soon be conquered." When Paul 
Bert was congratulated on his report, he said, "Admiration is 
such a good, wholesome thing ! ! " 

The Bill was voted by the Chamber, and a fortnight later by 
the Senate, unanimously. Pasteur heard the first news through 
the newspapers, for he had just gone to the Jura. On July 
14, he left Arbois for Dole, where he had promised to be 
present at a double ceremony. 

/ On that national holiday, a statue of Peace was to be 
inaugurated, and a memorial plate placed on the house where 
Pasteur was born ; truly a harmonious association of ideas. 
The prefect of the Jura evidently felt it when, while unveiling 
the statue in the presence of Pasteur, he said :• " This is 
Peace, who has inspired Genius and the great services it has 
rendered." The official procession, followed by popular accla- 
mation, went on to the narrow Rue des Tanneurs. When 
Pasteur, who had not seen his native place since his child- 
hood, found himself before that tannery, in the low humble 
rooms of which his father and mother had lived, he felt himself 
the prey to a strong emotion. 

The mayor quoted these words from the resolutions of the 
Municipal Council : " M. Pasteur is a benefactor of Humanity, 
one of the great men of France ; he will remain for all Dolois 
and in particular those who, like him, have risen from the ranks 
of the people, an object of reaped as well as an example to 
follow ; we consider that it is our duty to perpetuate his name 
in our town." 

The Director of Fine Arts, M. Kaempfen, representing the 

Government at the ceremony, pronounced these simple words : 

' In the name of the Government of the Republic, I salute the 

inscription which commemorates the fact that in this little 

house, in this little street, was born, on December 27, 1822, 

1882—1884 155 

he who was to become one of the greatest scientists of this cen- 
tury so great in science, and who has, by his admirable 
labours, increased the glory of France and deserved well of the 
whole of humanity." 

The feelings in Pasteur's heart burst forth in these terms : ^/ 
"Gentlemen, I am profoundly moved by the honour done to 
me by the town of Dole; but allow me, while expressing my 
gratitude, to protest against this excess of praise. By accord- 
ing to me a homage rendered usually but to the illustrious 
dead, you anticipate too much the judgment of posterity. Will 
it ratify your decision? and should not you, Mr. Mayor, have 
prudently warned the Municipal Council against such a hasty 
resolution ? 

" But after protesting, gentlemen, against the brilliant testi- 
mony of an admiration which is more than I deserve, let me tell 
you that I am touched, moved to the bottom of my soul. Your 
sympathy has joined on that memorial plate the two great 
things which have been the passion and the delight of my life : 
•the love of Science and the cult of the home. 

" Oh ! my father, my mother, dear departed ones, who lived 
so humbly in this little house, it is to you that I owe every- 
thing. Thy enthusiasm, my brave-hearted mother, thou hast 
instilled it into me. If I have always associated the greatness 
of Science with the greatness of France, it is because 1 was 
impregnated with the feelings that thou hadst inspired. And 
thou, dearest father, whose life was as hard as chy hard trade, 
thou hast shown to me what patience and protracted effort can 
accomplish. It is to thee that I owe perseverance in daily 
work. Not only hadst thou the qualities which go to make 
a useful life, but also admiration for great men and great 
things. To look upwards, learn to the utmost, to seek to rise 
ever higher, such was thy teaching. I can see thee now, after 
a hard day's work, reading in the evening some story of the 
battles in the glorious epoch of which thou wast a witness. 
Whilst teaching me to read, thy care was that I should learn 
the greatness of France. 

' Be ye blessed, my dear parents, for what ye have been, 
and may the homage done to-day to your little house be % 
yours ! 

'I thank you, gentlemen, for the opportunity of saying 
aloud what I have thought for sixty years. I thank you for 
this fete and for your welcome, and I thank the town of Dole, 


which loses sight of none of her children, and which has kept 
such a remembrance of me." 

"Nothing is more exquisite," wrote Bouley to Pasteur, 
" than those feelings of a noble heart, giving credit to the 
parents' influence for all the glory with which their son has 
covered their name. All your friends recognized you, and you 
appeared under quite a new light to those who may have 
misjudged your heart by knowing of you only the somewhat 
bitter words of some of your Academy speeches, when the love 
of truth has sometimes made you forgetful of gentleness." 

It might have seemed that after so much homage, especially 
when offered in such a delicate way as on this last occasion, 
Pasteur had indeed reached a pinnacle of fame. His ambition 
however was not satisfied. Was it then boundless, in spite of 
the modesty which drew all hearts towards him? What more 
did he wish? Two great things : to complete his studies on 
hydrophobia and to establish the position of his collaborators — 
whose name he ever associated with his work — as his acknow- 
ledged successors. 

A few cases of cholera had occurred at Damietta in the month 
of June. The English declared that it was but endemic 
cholera, and opposed the quarantines. They had with them 
the majority of the Alexandria Sanitary Council, and could 
easily prevent sanitary measures from being taken. If the 
English, voluntarily closing their eyes to the dangers of the 
epidemic, had wished to furnish a new proof of the importation 
of cholera, they could not have succeeded better. The cholera 
spread, and by July 14 it had reached Cairo. Between the 
14th and 22nd there were five hundred deaths per day. 

Alexandria was threatened. Pasteur, before leaving Paris 
for Arbois, submitted to the Consulting Committee of Public 
Hygiene the idea of a French Scientific Mission to Alex- 
andria. " Since the last epidemic in 18G5," he said, " science 
has made great progress on the subject of transmissible diseases. 
Every one of those diseases which has been subjected to a 
thorough study has been found by biologists to be produced by a 
microscopic being developing within the body of man or of 
animals, and causing therein ravages which are generally 
mortal. All the symptoms of the disease, all the causes of 
death depend directly upon the physiological properties of the 
microbe. . . . What is wanted at this moment to satisfy 

1882—1884 157 

the preoccupations of science is to inquire into the primary 
cause of the scourge. Now the present state of knowledge 
demands that attention should be drawn to the possible exist- 
ence within the blood, or within some organ, of a micro- 
organism whose nature and properties would account in all 
probability for all the peculiarities of cholera, both as to the 
morbid symptoms and the mode of its propagation. The proved 
existence of such a microbe would soon take precedence over 
the whole question of the measures to be taken to arrest the 
evil in its course, and might perhaps suggest new methods of 

Not only did the Committee of Hygiene approve of Pasteur's 
project, but they asked him to choose some young men whose 
knowledge would be equalled by their devotion. Pasteur only 
had to look around him. When, on his return to the laboratory, 
he mentioned what had taken place at the Committee of 
Hygiene, M. Roux immediately offered to start. A professor 
at the Faculty of Medicine who had some hospital practice, 
M. Straus, and a professor at the Alfort Veterinary School, 
M. Nocard, both of whom had been authorised to work in the 
laboratory, asked permission to accompany M. Roux, Thuillier 
had the same desire, but asked for twenty -four hours to think 
over it. 

The thought of his father and mother, who had made a great 
many sacrifices for his education, and whose only joy was to 
receive him at Amiens, where they lived, during his short 
holidays, made him hesitate. But the thought of duty over- 
came his regrets ; he put his papers and notes in order and 
went to see his dear ones again. He told his father of hie 
intention, but his mother did not know of it. At the time when 
the papers spoke of a French commission to study cholera, 
his elder sister, who loved him with an almost motherly tender- 
ness, said to him suddenly, " You are not going to Egypt, 
Louis? swear that you are not ! " "I am not going to swear 
anything," he answered, with absolute calm; adding that he 
might some time go to Russia to proceed to some vaccination of 
anthrax, as he had done at Buda-Pesth in 1881. When he left 
Amiens nothing in his farewells revealed his deep emotion ; it 
was only from Marseilles that he wrote the truth. 

Administrative difficulties retarded the departure of the 
Commission, which only reached Egypt on August 15. Dr. 
Koch had also come to study cholera. The head physician of 


the European hospital, Dr. Ardouin, placed his wards at the 
entire disposal of the French savants. In a certain number of 
cases, it was possible to proceed to post-mortem examinations 
immediately after death, before putrefaction had begun. It 
was a great thing from the point of view of the search after a 
pathogenic micro-organism as well as from the anatomo-patho- 
logical point of view. 

The contents of the intestines and the characteristic etools of 
the cholera patients offered a great variety of micro-organisms. 
But which was really the cause of cholera? The most varied 
modes of culture were attempted in vain. The same negative 
results followed inoculations into divers animal species, cats, 
dogs, swine, monkeys, pigeons, rabbits, guinea-pigs, etc., 
made with the blood of cholerics or with the contents of their 
bowels. Experiments were made with twenty-four corpses. 
The epidemic ceased unexpectedly. Not to waste time, while 
waiting for a reappearance of the disease, the French Commis- 
sion took up some researches on cattle plague. Suddenly a 
telegram from M. Roux informed Pasteur that Thuillier had 
succumbed to an attack of cholera. 

" I have just heard the news of a great misfortune," wrote 
Pasteur to J. B. Dumas on September 19; ' M. Thuillier 
died yesterday at Alexandria of cholera. I have telegraphed 
to the Mayor of Amiens asking him to break the news to the 

' Science loses in Thuillier a courageous representative with 
a great future before him. I lose a much-loved and devoted 
pupil ; my laboratory one of its principal supports. 

' I can only console myself for this death by thinking of our 
beloved country and all he has done for it." 

Thuillier was only twenty-six. How had this happened? 
Had he neglected any of the precautions which Pasteur had 
written down before the departure of the Commission, and 
which were so minute as to be thought exaggerated? 

Pasteur remained silent all day, absolutely overcome. The 
head of the laboratory, M. Chamberland, divining his master's 
.grief, came to Arbois. They exchanged their sorrowful 
thoughts, and Pasteur fell back into his sad broodings. 

\ few days later, a letter from M. Roux related the sad story : 
"Alexandria, September 21. Sir and dear master— Having 
just heard that an Italian ship is going to start, I am writing a 
few lines without waiting for the French mail. The tele- 

1882—1884 159 

graph has told you of the terrible misfortune which has 
befallen us." 

M. Eoux then proceeded to relate in detail the symptoms 
presented by the unfortunate young man, who, after going to 
bed at ten o'clock, apparently in perfect health, had suddenly 
been taken ill about three o'clock in the morning of Saturday, 
September 15. At eight o'clock, all the horrible symptoms 
of the most violent form of cholera were apparent, and his 
friends gave him up for lost. They continued their desperate 
endeavours however, assisted by the whole staff of French and 
Italian doctors. 

"By dint of all our strength, all our energy, we protracted 
the struggle until seven o'clock on Wednesday morning, the 
19th. The asphyxia, which had then lasted twenty-four hours, 
was stronger than our efforts. 

" Your own feelings will help you to imagine our grief. 

"The French colony and the medical staff are thunder- 
struck. Splendid funeral honours have been rendered to our 
poor Thuillier. 

"He was buried at four o'clock on Wednesday afternoon, 
with the finest and most imposing manifestation Alexandria 
had seen for a long time. 

" One very precious and affecting homage was rendered by 
the German Commission with a noble simplicity which touched 
us all very much. 

" M. Koch and his collaborators arrived when the news 
spread in the town. They gave utterance to beautiful and 
touching words to the memory of our dead friend. When the 
funeral took place, those gentlemen brought two wreaths which 
they themselves nailed on the coffin. ' They are simple,' said 
M. Koch, 'but they are of laurel, such as are given to the 

" M. Koch held one corner of the pall. We embalmed our 
comrade's body ; he lies in a sealed zinc coffin. All formalities 
have been complied with, so that his remains may be brought 
back to France when the necessary time has expired. In 
Egypt the period of delay is a whole year. 

"The French colony desires to erect a monument to the 
memory of Louis Thuillier. 

" Dear master, how much more I should like to tell you ! 
The recital of the sad event which happened so quickly would 
take pages. This blow is altogether incomprehensible. It was 


more than a fortnight since we had 6een a single case of 
cholera ; we were beginning to 6tudy cattle-plague. 

" Of us all, Thuillier was the one who took most precautions ; 
he was irreproachably careful. 

" We are writing by this post a few lines to his family, in 
the names of all of us. 

" Such are the blows cholera can strike at the end of an 
epidemic ! Want of time forces me to close this letter. Pray 
believe in our respectful affection." 

The whole of the French colony, who received great marks of 
sympathy from the Italians and other foreigners, wished to 
perpetuate the memory of Thuillier. Pasteur wrote, on October 
16, to a French physician at Alexandria, who had informed him 
of this project : 

'1 am touched with the generous resolution of the French 
colony at Alexandria to erect a monument to the memory of 
Louis Thuillier. That valiant and beloved young man was 
deserving of every honour. I know, perhaps better than any 
one, the loss inflicted on science by his cruel death. I cannot 
console myself, and I am already dreading the sight of the dear 
fellow's empty place in my laboratory." 

On his return to Paris, Pasteur read a paper to the Academy 
of Sciences, in his own name and in that of Thuillier, on the 
now well-ascertained mode of vaccination for swine-fever. He 
began by recalling Thuillier's worth : 

' Thuillier entered my laboratory after taking the first rank 
at the Physical Science Agregation competition at the Ecole 
Nnrmale. His was a deeply meditative, silent nature ; his whole 
person breathed a virile energy which struck all those who knew 
him. An indefatigable worker, he was ever ready for self- 

A few days before, M. Straus had given to the Biology 
Society a summary statement of the studies of the Cholera Com- 
mission, concluding thus: "The documents collected during 
those two months are far from solving the etiological problem of 
cholera, but will perhaps not be useless for the orientation of 
future research." 

The cholera bacillus was put in evidence, later on. by Dr. Koch, 
who had already suspected it during his researches in Egypt. 

Glory, which had been seen in the battlefield at the beginning 
of the nineteenth century, now seemed to elect to dwell in the 

1882—1884 161 

laboratory, that " temple of the future " as Pasteur called it. 
From every part of the world, letters reached Pasteur, appeals, 
requests for consultations. Many took him for a physician. 
'He does not cure individuals," answered Edmund About one 
day to a foreigner who was under that misapprehension ; " he 
only tries to cure humanity." Some sceptical minds were pre- 
dicting failure to his studies on hydrophobia. This problem was 
complicated by the fact that Pasteur was trying in vain to dis- 
cover and isolate the specific microbe. 

He was endeavouring to evade that difficulty ; the idea pur- 
sued him that human medicine might avail itself of " the long 
period of incubation of hydrophobia, by attempting to establish, 
during that interval before the appearance of the first rabic 
symptoms, a refractory condition in the subjects bitten." 

At the beginning of the year 1884, J. B. Dumas enjoyed 
following from a distance Pasteur's readings at the Academie 
des Sciences. His failing health and advancing age (he was 
more than eighty years old) had forced him to spend the winter 
in the South of France. On January 26, 1884, he wrote to 
Pasteur for the last time, a propos of a book l which was a short 
summary of Pasteur's discoveries and their concatenation : 

" Dear colleague and friend, — I have read with a great and 
sincere emotion the picture of your scientific life drawn by a 
faithful and loving hand. 

"Myself a witness and a sincere admirer of your happy 
efforts, your fruitful genius and your imperturbable method, 
I consider it a great service rendered to Science, that the 
accurate and complete whole should be put before the eyes of 
young people. 

"It will make a wholesome impression on the public in 
general; to young scientists, it will be an initiation, and to 
those who, like me, have passed the age of labour it will bring 
happy memories of youthful enthusiasm. 

' May Providence long spare you to France, and maintain in 
you that admirable equilibrium between the mind that observes, 
the genius that conceives, and the hand that executes with a 
perfection unknown until now." 

This was a last proof of Dumas' affection for Pasteur. 
Although his life was now fast drawing to its close, his mental 
faculties were in no wise impaired, for we find him three weeks 
later, on February 20, using his influence as Permanent Secre- 

1 La Vie d'un Savant, by the author of the present work. [Trano.] 


tary of the Academy to obtain the Lacaze prize for M. Caillet I 

the inventor of the well-known apparatus for the liquefaction of 


J. B. Dumas died on April 11 , 1884. Pasteur was then about 
to start for Edinlrurgh on the occasion of the tercentenary of the 
celebrated Scotch University. The " Institut de France," 
invited to take part in these celebrations, had selected represen- 
tatives from each of the five Academies: the Academic 
Francaise was sending M. Caro; the Academy <>f Sciem 
Pasteur and de Lesseps ; the Academy of Moral Sciences, M. 
Greard ; the Academy of Inscriptions and Letters, M. Perrot : 
and the Academy of Fine Arts, M. Eugene Guillaume. The 
College de France sent M. Guillaume Guizot, and the Academy 
of Medicine Dr. Henry Gueneau de Mussy. 

Pasteur much wished to relinquish this official journey ; the 
idea that he would not be able to follow to the grave the incom- 
parable teacher of his youth, the counsellor and confidant of his 
life, was infinitely painful to him. 

He was however reconciled to it by one of his colleagues, 
M. Mezieres, who was going to Edinburgh on behalf of the 
Minister of Public Instruction, ami who pointed out to him that 
the best way of honouring Dumas' memory lay in remc inhering 
Dumas' chief object in life — the interests of France. Pasteur 
went, hoping that he would have an opportunity of speaking of 
Dumas to the Edinburgh students. 

In London, the French delegates had the pleasant surprise 
of finding that a private saloon had been reserved to take Pasteur 
and his friends to Edinburgh. This hospitality was offered to 
Pasteur by one of his numerous admirers, Mr. Younger, an 
Edinburgh brewer, as a token oi gratitude for his discoveries in 
the manufacture of beer. He and his wife and children wel- 
comed Pasteur with the wannest cordiality, when the train 
reached Edinburgh ; the principal inhabitants of the great 
Scotch city vied with each other in entertaining the French 
delegates, who were delighted with their reception. 

The next morning, they, and the various representatives 
from all parts of the world, assembled in the Cathedral of St. 
Giles, where, with the exalted feeling which, in the Scotch 
people, mingles religious with political life, the Town Council 
had decided thai a service should inaugurate the rejoicings. 
The Rev. Robert Flint, mounting thai pulpit from which the 
impetuous John Knox, Calvin's friend and disciple, had 

1882—1884 163 

breathed forth his violent fanaticism, preached to the immense 
assembly with a full consciousness of the importance of his dis- 
course. He spoke of the relations between Science and Faith, 
of the absolute liberty of science in the realm of facts, of the 
thought of God considered as a stimulant to research, progress 
being but a Divine impulse. 

In the afternoon, the students imparted life and merriment 
into the proceedings ; they had organized a dramatic perform- 
ance, the members of the orchestra, even, being undergraduates. 

The French delegates took great interest in the system of this 
University. Accustomed as they were to look upon the State 
as sole master and dispenser, they now saw an independent 
institution, owing its fortune to voluntary contributions, reveal- 
ing in every point the power of private enterprise. Unlike 
what takes place in France, where administrative unity makes 
itself felt in the smallest village, the British Government effaces 
itself, and merely endeavours to inspire faith in political unity. 
Absolutely her own mistress, the University of Edinburgh is 
free to confer high honorary degrees on her distinguished 
visitors. However, these honorary diplomas are but of two 
kinds, viz. : Doctor of Divinity (D.D.) and Doctor of Laws 
(LL.D.). In 1884, seventeen degrees of D.D. and 122 degrees 
of LL.D. were reserved for the various delegates. " The only 
laws I know," smilingly said the learned Helmholtz, " are the 
laws of Physics." 

The solemn proclamation of the University degrees took place 
on Thursday, April 17. The streets and monuments of the 
beautiful city were decorated with flags, and an air of rejoicing 
pervaded the whole atmosphere. 

The ceremony began by a special prayer, alluding to the past, 
looking forward to the future, and asking for God's blessing on 
the delegates and their countries. The large assembly filled the 
immense hall where the Synod of the Presbyterian Church holds 
its meetings. The Chancellor and the Eector of the University 
were seated on a platform with a large number of professors ; 
those who were about to receive honorary degrees occupied seats 
in the centre of the hall ; about three thousand students found 
seats in various parts of the hall. 

The Chancellor of the University of Edinburgh had arranged 
that the new graduates should be called in alphabetical order. 
As each of them heard his name, he rose and mounted the 
platform. The students took great pleasure m heartily cheer- 

C G 


ing those savants who had had most influence on their studies. 
When Pasteur's name was pronounced, a great silence ensued; 
every one was trying to obtain a sight of him as he walked 
towards the platform. His appearance was the signal for a 
perfect outburst of applause ; five thousand men rose and cheered 
him. It was indeed a splendid ovation. 

In the evening, a banquet was set out in the hall, which was 
hung with the blue and white colours of the University ; th< 
were a thousand guests, seated round twenty-eight tables, one 
of which, the high table, was reserved for the speakers who were 
to propose the toasts, which were to last four hours. Pasteur 
was seated next to Virchow ; they talked together of the question 
of rabies, and Virchow owned that, when he saw Pasteur in 
1881 about to tackle this question, he much doubted the pos- 
sibility of a solution. This friendly chat between two such men 
proves the desirability of such gatherings ; intercourse between 
the greatest scientists can but lead to general peace and fra- 
ternity between nations. After having read a telegram from 
the Queen, congratulating the University and welcoming the 
guests, a toast was drunk to the Queen and to the Royal Family, 
and a few words spoken by the representative of the Emperor of 
Brazil. Pasteur then rose to speak : 

" My Lord Chancellor, Gentlemen, the city of Edinburgh is 
now offering a sight of which she may be proud. All the gr 
scientific institutions, meeting here, appear as an immense Con- 
gress of hopes and congratulations. The honour and glory of 
this international rendezvous deservedly belong to you. for it is 
centuries since Scotland united her destinies with those of the 
human mind. She was one of the first among the nations to 
understand that intellect leads the world. And I .rid of 

intellect, gladly answering your call, lays a well-merited horn, 
at your feet. When, yesterday, the eminent Professor Rol 
Flint, addressing the Edinburgh University from the pulpit of 
St. Giles, exclaimed, I iber the past and look to I 

future,' all the delegates, seated like judges at a great trihur 
evoked a vision of j nturies and joined in a unanimous wish 

for a yet more glorious future. 

" Amongst the illustrious delegates of all nations who b- 
you an assurance .,f cordial good wishes. France has sen- 
represent her those of her institutions which arc most re] 
tative of the French spirit and the b t of French 

France is ready to applaud whenever a source of light appears in 

1882—1884 165 

the world; and when death strikes down a man of genius, 
France is ready to weep as for one of her own children. This 
noble spirit of solidarity was brought home to me when I heard 
some of you speak feelingly of the death of the illustrious 
chemist, J. B. Dumas, a celebrated member of all your 
Academies, and only a few years ago an eloquent panegyrist of 
your great Faraday. It was a bitter grief to me that I had to 
leave Paris before his funeral ceremony ; but the hope of render- 
ing here a last and solemn homage to that revered master 
helped me to conquer my affliction. Moreover, gentlemen, men 
may pass, but their works remain ; we all are but passing guests 
of these great homes of intellect, which, like all the Universities 
who have come to greet you in this solemn day, are assured of 

Pasteur, having thus rendered homage to J. B. Dumas, and 
having glorified his country by his presence, his speech and the 
great honours conferred on him, would have returned home at 
once ; but the undergraduates begged to be allowed to entertain, 
the next day, some of those men whom they looked upon as 
examples and whom they might never see again. 

Pasteur thanked the students for this invitation, which filled 
him with pride and pleasure, for he had always loved young 
people, he said, and continued, in his deep, stirring voice : 

"Ever since I can remember my life as a man, I do not 
think I have ever spoken for the first time with a student with- 
out saying to him, 'Work perseveringly ; work can be made 
into a pleasure, and alone is profitable to man, to his city, to 
his country.' It is even more natural that I should thus speak 
to you. The common soul (if I may so speak) of an assembly of 
young men is wholly formed of the most generous feelings, being 
yet illumined with the divine spark which is in every man as 
he enters this world. You have just given a proof of this 
assurance, and I have felt moved to the heart in hearing you 
applaud, as you have just been doing, such men as de Lesseps, 
Helmholtz and Virchow. Your language has borrowed from 
ours the beautiful word enthusiasm, bequeathed to us by the 
Greeks : ev 0eo?, an inward God. It was almost with a 
divine feeling that you just now cheered those great men. 

' One of those of our writers who have best made known 
to France and to Europe the philosophy of Eobert Eeid and 
Dugald Stewart said, addressing young men in the preface of 
one of his works : — 

c c 2 


" ' Whatever career you may embrace, look up to an exalted 
goal ; worship great men and great things.' 

" Great things I You have indeed seen them. Will not this 
centenary remain one of Scotland's glorious memories? As to 
great men, in no country is their memory better honoured 
than in yours. But, if work should be the very life of your 
life, if the cult for great men and great things should be asso- 
ciated with your every thought, that is still not enough. Try 
to bring into everything you undertake the spirit of scientific 
method, founded on the immortal works of Galileo, Descartes 
and Newton. 

"You especially, medical students of this celebrated Univer- 
sity of Edinburgh — who, trained as you are by eminent masters, 
may aspire to the highest scientific ambition — be you inspired by 
the experimental method. To its principles, Scotland owes 
such men as Brewster, Thomson and Lister." 

The speaker who had to respond on behalf of the students 
to the foreign delegates expressed himself thus, directly address- 
ing Pasteur : 

' Monsieur Pasteur, you have snatched from nature secrets 
too carefully, almost maliciously hidden. We greet in you a 
benefactor of humanity, all the more so because we know that 
you admit the existence of spiritual secrets, revealed to us by 
what you have just called the work of God in us. 

" Bepresentatives of France, we beg you to tell your great 
country that we are following with admiration the great reforms 
now being introduced into every branch of your education, 
reforms which we look upon as tokens of a beneficent rivalry and 
of a more and more cordial intercouse — for misunderstandings 
result from ignorance, a darkness lightened by the work of 

The next morning, at ten o'clock, crowds gathered on the 
station platform with waving handkerchiefs. People were 
showing each other a great Edinburgh daily paper, in which 
Pasteur's speech to the undergraduates was reproduced and 
which also contained the following announcement in large 
print : 

"In memory of M. Pasteur's visit to Edinburgh, Mr. 
Younger offers to the Edinburgh University a donation of 

Livingstone's daughter, Mrs. Bruce, on whom Pasteur had 
called the preceding day, came to the station a few moments 

1882—1884 167 

before the departure of the train, bringing him a book entitled 
The Life of Livingstone. 

The saloon carriage awaited Pasteur and his friends. They 
departed, delighted with the hospitality they had received, and 
much struck with the prominent place given to science and the 
welcome accorded to Pasteur. " This is indeed glory," said one 
of them. "Believe me," said Pasteur, " I only look upon it as 
a reason for continuing to go forward as long as my strength 
does not fail me." 


Amidst the various researches undertaken in his laboratory, 
one study was placed by Pasteur above every other, one mystery 
constantly haunted his mind — that of hydrophobia. When he 
was received at the Acad^mie Francaise, Renan, hoping to pr 
himself a prophet for once, said to him : " Humanity will owe 
to you deliverance from a horrible disease and also from a sad 
anomaly : I mean the distrust which we cannot help mingling 
with the caresses of the animal in whom we see most of nature's 
smiling benevolence." 

The two first mad dogs brought into the laboratory were 
given to Pasteur, in 1880, by M. Bourrel, an old army veter- 
inary surgeon who had long been trying to find a remedy for 
hydrophobia. He had invented a preventive measure which 
consisted in filing down the teeth of dogs, so that they should 
not bite into the skin ; in 1874, he had written that vivisection 
threw no light on that disease, the laws of which were " impene- 
trable to science until now." It now occurred to him that, 
perhaps, the investigators in the laboratory of the Ecole Nor- 
male might be more successful than he had been in his kennels 
in the Rue Fontaine-au-Roi. 

One of the two dogs he sent was suffering from what is called 
dumb madneit : his jaw hung, half opened and paralyzed, his 
tongue was covered with foam, and his eyes full of wistful 
anguish ; the other made ferocious darts at anything held out 
to him, with a rabid fury in his bloodshot eyes, and, in the 
hallucinations of his delirium, gave vent to haunting, despairing 

Much confusion prevailed at that time regarding this disease, 
its seat, its causes, and its remedy. Three things seemed posi- 
tive : firstly, that the rabic virus was contained in the saliva of 
the mad annuals ; secondly, that it was communicated through 


bites ; and thii'dly, that the period of incubation might vary from 
a few days to several months. Clinical observation was reduced 
to complete impotence ; perhaps experiments might throw some 
light on the subject. 

Bouley had affirmed in April, 1870, that the germ of the evil 
was localized in the saliva, and a new fact had seemed to support 
this theory. On December 10, 1880, Pasteur was advised by 
Professor Lannelongue that a five-year-old child, bitten on the 
face a month before, had just been admitted into the Hopital 
Trousseau. The unfortunate little patient presented all the 
characteristics of hydrophobia : spasms, restlessness, shudders 
at the least breath of air, an ardent thirst, accompanied with an 
absolute impossibility of swallowing, convulsive movements, fits 
of furious rage — not one symptom was absent. T1>q child died 
after twenty-four hours of horrible suffering — suffocated by the 
mucus which filled the mouth. Pasteur gathered some of that 
mucus four hours after the child's death, and mixed it with 
water ; he then inoculated this into some rabbits, which died in 
less than thirty-six hours, and whose saliva, injected into other 
rabbits, provoked an almost equally rapid death. Dr. Maurice 
Ptaynaud, who had already declared that hydrophobia could be 
transmitted to rabbits through the human saliva, and who had 
also caused the death of some rabbits with the saliva of that 
same child, thought himself justified in saying that those rabbits 
had died of hydrophobia. 

Pasteur was slower in drawing conclusions. He had examined 
with a microscope the blood of those rabbits which had died in 
the laboratory, and had found in it a micro-organism; he had 
cultivated this organism in veal broth, inoculated it into rabbits 
and dogs, and, its virulence having manifested itself in these 
animals, their blood had been found to contain that same 
microbe. "But," added Pasteur at the meeting of the 
Academy of Medicine (January 18, 1881), " I am absolutely ig- 
norant of the connection there may be between this new disease 
and hydrophobia." It was indeed a singular thing that the 
deadly issue of this disease should occur so early, when the 
incubation period of hydrophobia is usually so long. Was there 
not some unknown microbe associated with the rabic saliva? 
This query was followed by experiments made with the saliva 
of children who had died of ordinary diseases, and even with 
that of healthy adults. Thuillier, following up and studying 
this saliva microbe and its special virulence with his usual 


patience, soon applied to it with success the method of attenua- 
tion by the oxygen in air. " What did we want with a new 
disease?" said a good many people, and yet it was making a 
step forward to clear up this preliminary confusion. Pasteur, 
in the course of a long and minute study of the saliva of mad 
dogs — in which it was so generally admitted that the virulent 
principle of rabies had its seat, that precautions against saliva 
were the only ones taken at post-mortem examinations — dis- 
covered many other mistakes. If a healthy dog's saliva contains 
many microbes, licked up by the dog in various kinds of dirt, what 
must be the condition of the mouth of a rabid dog, springing upon 
everything he meets, to tear it and bite it? The rabic virus is 
therefore associated with many other micro-organisms, ready to 
play their part and puzzle experimentalists; abscesses, morbid 
complications of all sorts, may intervene before the develop- 
ment of tha rabic virus. Hydrophobia might evidently be 
developed by the inoculation of saliva, but it could not be con- 
fidently asserted that it would. Pasteur had made endless 
efforts to inoculate rabies to rabbits solely through the saliva 
of a mad dog ; as soon as a case of hydrophobia occurred in 
Bourrel's kennels, a telegram informed the laboratory, and a 
few rabbits were immediately taken round in a cab. 

One day, Pasteur having wished to collect a little saliva from 
the jaws of a rabid dog , so as to obtain it directly , two of Bourrel's 
assistants undertook to drag a mad bulldog, foaming at the 
mouth, from its cage ; they seized it by means of a lasso, and 
stretched it on a table. These two men, thus associated with 
Pasteur in the same danger, with the same calm heroism, held 
the struggling, ferocious animal down with their powerful 
hands, whilst the scientist drew, by means of a glass tube held 
between his lips, a few drops of the deadly saliva. 

But the same uncertainty followed the inoculation of the 
saliva ; the incubation was so slow that weeks and months 
often elapsed whilst the result of an experiment was being 
anxiously awaited. Evidently the saliva was not a sure agent 
for experiments, and if more knowledge was to be obtained, 
some other means had to be found of obtaining it. 

Magendie and Renault had both tried experimenting with 
rabic blood, but with no results, and Paul Bert had been 
equally unsuccessful. Pasteur tried in his turn, but also in 
vain. "We must try other experiments," he said, with his 
usual indefatigable p< i 

1884—1885 171 

As the number of cases observed became larger, he felt a 
growing conviction that hydrophobia has its seat in the nervous 
system, and particularly in the medulla oblongata. "The 
propagation of the virus in a rabid dog's nervous system can 
almost be observed in its every stage," writes M. Eoux, 
Pasteur's daily associate in these researches, which he after- 
wards made the subject of his thesis. " The anguish and fury 
due to the excitation of the grey cortex of the brain are followed 
by an alteration of the voice and a difficulty in deglutition. 
The medulla oblongata and the nerves starting from it are 
attacked in their turn; finally, the spinal cord itself becomes 
invaded and paralysis closes the scene." 

As long as the virus has not reached the nervous centres, it 
may sojourn for weeks or months in some point of the body ; 
this explains the slowness of certain incubations, and the fortu- 
nate escapes after some bites from rabid dogs. The a priori 
supposition that the virus attacks the nervous centres went very 
far back ; it had served as a basis to a theory enunciated by Dr. 
Duboue (of Pau), who had, however, not supported it by any 
experiments. On the contrary, when M. Galtier, a professor 
at the Lyons Veterinary School, had attempted experiments in 
that direction, he had to inform the Academy of Medicine, in 
January, 1881, that he had only ascertained the existence of 
virus in rabid dogs in the lingual glands and in the bucco- 
pharyngeal mucous membrane. 'More than ten times, and 
always unsuccessfully, have I inoculated the product obtained 
by pressure of the cerebral substances of the cerebellum or of 
the medulla oblongata of rabid dogs." 

Pasteur was about to prove that it was possible to succeed 
by operating in a special manner, according to a rigorous tech- 
nique, unknown in other laboratories. When the post-mortem 
examination of a mad dog had revealed no characteristic lesion, 
the brain was uncovered, and the surface of the medulla 
oblongata scalded with a glass stick, so as to destroy any 
external dust or dirt. Then, with a long tube, previously put 
through a flame, a particle of the substance was drawn and 
deposited in a glass just taken from a stove heated up to 200° C. r 
and mixed with a little water or sterilized broth by means of a 
glass agitator, also previously put through a flame. The 
syringe used for inoculation on the rabbit or dog (lying ready on 
the operating board) had been purified in boiling water 

Most of the amr als who received this inoculation under the 


6kin succumbed to hydrophobia ; that virulent matter was there- 
fore more successful than the saliva, which was a great result 

" The seat of the rabic virus," wrote Pasteur, " is therefore 
not in the saliva only : the brain contains it in a degree of 
virulence at least equal to that of the saliva of rabid aninia! 
But, to Pasteur's eyes, this was but a preliminary step on the 
long road which stretched before him ; it was necessary that 
all the inoculated animals should contract hydrophobia, and 
the period of incubation had to be shortened. 

It was then that it occurred to Pasteur to inoculate the rabic 
virus directly on the surface of a dog's brain. He thought 
that, by placing the virus from the beginning in its true medium, 
hydrophobia would more surely supervene and the incubation 
might be shorter. The experiment was attempted : a dog 
under chloroform was fixed to the operating board, and a small, 
round portion of the cranium removed by means of a trephine 
(a surgical instrument somewhat similar to a fret-saw) ; the 
tough fibrous membrane called the dura-mater, being thus 
exposed, was then injected with a small quantity of the pre- 
pared virus, which lay in readiness in a Pravaz syringe. The 
wound was washed with carbolic and the skin stitched to- 
gether, the whole thing lasting but a few minutes. The 

..on returning to consciousness, seemed quite the sa: 
as usual. But, after fourteen days, hydrophobia appeared : 
rabid fury, characteristic howls, the tearing up and devour- 
ing of his bed, delirious hallucination, and finally, paralv 
and death. 

A method was therefore found by which rabies was con- 
tracted surely and swiftly. Trephininga were again performed 
on chloroformed animals — Pasteur had a great horror of useL 
sufferings, and always insisted on an In every ca 

characteristic hydrophobia occurred after inoculation on : 
brain. The main lines of this complicated question were begin- 
ning to be traceable; but other obstacles were in the \\ 
Pasteur could not apply the method he had hitl; : 
to isolate, and then to cultivate in an artificial medium, the 
microbe of hydrophobia, for he failed in detecting this microbe. 
Yet its existence admitted of no doubt; perhaps it was beyond 
the limits of human sight. "Since this unknown being is 
living," thought 1 we must cultivate it; failing an 

1884—1885 173 

artificial medium, let us try the brain of living rabbits; it 
would indeed be an experimental feat ! ' ' 

As soon as a trephined and inoculated rabbit died paralyzed, 
a little of his rabic medulla was inoculated to another ; each 
inoculation succeeded another, and the time of incubation be- 
came shorter and shorter, until, after a hundred uninterrupted 
inoculations, it came to be reduced to seven days. But the 
virus, having reached this degree, the virulence of which was 
found to be greater than that of the virus of dogs made rabid 
by an accidental bite, now became fixed ; Pasteur had mastered 
it. He could now predict the exact time when death should 
occur in each of the inoculated animals ; his predictions were 
verified with surprising accuracy. 

Pasteur was not yet satisfied with the immense progress 
marked by infallible inoculation and the shortened incubation ; 
he now wished to decrease the degrees of virulence — when the 
attenuation of the virus was once conquered, it might be hoped 
that dogs could be made refractory to rabies. Pasteur abstracted 
a fragment of the medulla from a rabbit which had just died of 
rabies after an inoculation of the fixed virus ; this fragment 
was suspended by a thread in a sterilized phial, the air in which 
was kept dry by some pieces of caustic potash lying at the bottom 
of the vessel and which was closed by a cotton-wool plug to pre- 
vent the entrance of atmospheric dusts. The temperature of 
the room where this desiccation took place was maintained at 
23° C. As the medulla gradually became dry, its virulence 
decreased, until, at the end of fourteen days, it had become 
absolutely extinguished. This now inactive medulla was 
crushed and mixed with pure water, and injected under the 
skin of some dogs. The next day they were inoculated with 
medulla which had been desiccating for thirteen days, and so 
on, using increased virulence until the medulla was used of a 
rabbit dead the same day. These dogs might now be bitten by 
rabid dogs given them as companions for a few minutes, or 
submitted to the intracranial inoculations of the deadly virus : 
they resisted both. 

Having at last obtained this refractory condition, Pasteur was 
anxious that his results should be verified by a Commission. 
The Minister of Public Instruction acceded to this desire, and 
a Commission was constituted in May, 1884, composed of 
Messrs. Beclard, Dean of the Faculty of Medicine, Paul Bert, 
Bouley, Villemin, Vulpian, and Tisserand, Director of the 


Agriculture Office. The Commission immediately set to work ; 
a rabid dog having succumbed at Alfort on June 1, its carcase 
was brought to the laboratory of the Ecole Normale, and a f i 
ment of the medulla oblongata was mixed with some sterilized 
broth. Two dogs, declared by Pasteur to be refractory to 
rabies, were trephined, and a few drops of the liquid injected 
into their brains ; two other dogs and two rabbits received 
inoculations at the same time, with the same liquid and in 
precisely the same manner. 

Bouley was taking notes for a report to be presented to the 
Minister : 

' M. Pasteur tells us that, considering the nature of the 
rabic virus used, the rabbits and the two new dogs will develop 
rabies within twelve or fifteen days, and that the two refractory 
dogs will not develop it at all, however long they may be 
detained under observation." 

On May 29, Mme. Pasteur wrote to her children : 

"The Commission on rabies met to-day and elected M. 
Bouley as chairman. Nothing is settled as to commencing 
experiments. Your father is absorbed in his thoughts, talks 
little, sleeps little, rises at dawn, and, in one word, continues 
the life I began with him this day thirty-five years ago." 
v On June 3, Bourrel sent word that he had a rabid dog in 
the kennels of the Eue Fontaine-au-Eoi ; a refractory dog 
and a new dog were immediately submitted to numerous 
bites ; the latter was violently bitten on the head in several 
places. The rabid dog, still living the next day and still able 
to bite, was given two more dogs, one of which was refractory ; 
this dog, and the refractory dog bitten on the 3rd, were 
allowed to receive the first bites, the Commission having 
thought that perhaps the saliva might then be more abundant 
and more dangerous. 

On June 6, the rabid dog having died, the Commission pro- 
ceeded to inoculate the medulla of the animal into six more 
dogs, by means of trephining. Three of those dogs were 
refractory, the three others were fresh from the kennels; there 
were also two rabbits. 

On the 10th, Bourrel telegraphed the arrival of another 
rabid dog, and the same operations were gone through. 

" This rabid, furious dog." wrote Pasteur to his son-in-law, 

' had spent the night lying on his master's bed ; his appearance 

had been suspicious for a day or two. On the morning of the 

1884—1885 175 

10th, his voice became rabietic, and his master, who had 
heard the bark of a rabid dog twenty years ago, was seized 
with terror, and brought the dog to M. Bourrel, who found that 
he wa*; indeed in the biting stage of rabies. Fortunately a 
lingering fidelity had prevented him from attacking his 
master. . . . 

" This morning the rabic condition is beginning to appear 
on one of the new dogs trephined on June 1, at the same time 
as two refractory dogs. Let us hope that the other new dog 
will also develop it and that the two refractory ones will 

At the same time that the Commission examined this dog 
which developed rabies within the exact time indicated by 
Pasteur, the two rabbits on whom inoculation had been per- 
formed at the same time were found to present the first 
symptoms of rabic paralysis. " This paralysis," noted Bouley, 
is revealed by great weakness of the limbs, particularly of 
the hind quarters ; the least shock knocks them over and 
they experience great difficulty in getting up again." The 
second new dog on whom inoculation had been performed 
on June 1 was now also rabid ; the refractory dogs were in 
perfect health. 

During the whole of June, Pasteur found time to keep his 
daughter and son-in-law informed of the progress of events. 
"Keep my letters," he wrote, "they are almost like copies 
of the notes taken on the experiments." 

Towards the end of the month, dozens of dogs were sub- 
mitted to control-experiments which were continued until 
August. The dogs which Pasteur declared to be refractory 
underwent all the various tests made with rabic virus; bites, 
injections into the veins, trephining, everything was tried 
before Pasteur would decide to call them vaccinated. On 
June 17, Bourrel sent word that the new dog bitten on June 3 
was becoming rabic ; the members of the Commission went to 
the Bue Fontaine-au-Boi. The period of incubation had only 
lasted fourteen days, a fact attributed by Bouley to the bites 
having been chiefly about the head. The dog was destroying 
his kennel and biting his chain ferociously. More new dogs 
developed rabies the following days. Nineteen new dogs had 
been experimented upon : three died out of six bitten by a 
rabid dog, six out of eight after intravenous inoculation, and 
five out of five after subdural inoculation. Bouley thought that 


a few more cases might occur, the period of incubation after 
bites being so extremely irregular. 

Bouley's report was sent to the Minister of Public Instruc- 
tion at the beginning of August. " We submit to you to- 
day," he wrote, " this report on the first series of experiments 
that we have just witnessed, in order that M. Pasteur 
may refer to it in the paper which he proposes to read 
at the Copenhagen International Scientific Congress on 
these magnificent results, which devolve so much credit on 
French Science and which give it a fresh claim to the world's 

The Commission wished that a large kennel yard might be 
built, in order that the duration of immunity in protected dogs 
might be timed, and that other great problem solved, viz., 
whether it would be possible, through the inoculation of 
attenuated virus, to defy the virus from bites. 

By the Minister's request, the Commission investigated the 
Meudon woods in search of a favourable site; an excellent 
place was found in the lower part of the Park, away from 
dwelling houses, easy to enclose and presumably in no one's 
way. But, when the inhabitants of Meudon heard of this 
project, they protested vehemently, evidently terrified at the 
thought of rabid dogs, however securely bound, in their peace- 
ful neighbourhood. 

Another piece of ground was then sug. I to Pasteur, near 

St. Cloud, in the Park of Villeneuve 1'Etang. Originally a 
State domain, this property had been put up for sale, but had 
found no buyer, not being suitable for parcelling out in small 
lots; the Bill was withdrawn which allowed of its sale and the 
r part of the domain was devoted by the Ministry to 
^teur's and his assistants' experiments on the prophylaxis 
of contagious diseases. 

Pasteur, his mind full of ideas, started for the International 
Medical ('■ 98, which was now to take place at Copenhagen. 
Sixteen hundred members arranged to attend, and nearly all 
of them found on arriving that they were to be entertained in 
the houses of private individuals. The Danes carry hospital 
to the most gener ral of them had been learn- 

ing French for the last three years, the better to entertain 
the French delegates. Pasteur's son, then secretary of the 
French Legation at Copenhagen, had often spoken to his 
father with appreciative admiration of those Northerners, who 

1884—1885 177 

hide deep enthusiasm under apparent calmness, almost 

The opening meeting took place on August 10 in the large 
hall of the Palace of Industry; the King and Queen of 
Denmark and the King and Queen of Greece were present at 
that impressive gathering. The President, Professor Panum, 
welcomed the foreign members in the name of his country ; he 
proclaimed the neutrality of Science, adding that the three 
official languages to be used during the Congress would be 
French, English, and German. His own speech was entirely 
in French, "the language which least divides us," he said, 
"and which we are accustomed to look upon as the most 
courteous in the world." 

The former president of the London Congress, Sir James 
Paget, emphasized the scientific consequences of those triennial 
meetings, showing that, thanks to them, nations may calculate 
the march of progress. 

Virchow, in the name of Germany, developed the same idea. 

Pasteur, representing France, showed again as he had done 
at Milan in 1878, in London in 1881, at Geneva in 1882, and 
quite recently in Edinburgh, how much the scientist and the 
patriot were one in him. 

"In the name of France," said he, "I thank M, le 
President for his words of welcome ... By our presence 
in this Congress, we affirm the neutrality of Science . . . 
Science is of no country. . . . But if Science has no 
country, the scientist must keep in mind ali that may work 
towards the glory of his country. In every great scientist will 
be found a great patriot. The thought of adding to the great- 
ness of his country sustains him in his long efforts, and throws 
him into the difficult but glorious scientific enterprises which 
bring about real and durable conquests. Humanity then 
profits by those labours coming from various directions. ..." 

At the end of the meeting Pasteur was presented to the King. 
The Queen of Denmark and the Queen of Greece, regardless 
of etiquette, walked towards him, "a signal proof," wrote a 
French contemporary, " of the esteem in which our illustrious 
countryman is held at the Danish Court." 

Five general meetings were to give some of the scientists an 
opportunity of expounding their views on subjects of universal 
interest. Pasteur was asked to read the first paper ; his 
audience consisted, besides the members of the Congress, of 


many other men interested in scientific things, who had come 
to hear him describe the steps by which he had made such 
6ecure progress in the arduous question of hydrophobia. He 
began by a declaration of war against the prejudice by which 
bo many people believe that rabies can occur spontaneously. 
Whatever the pathological, physiological, or other conditions 
may be under which a dog or another animal is placed, rabies 
never appears if the animal has not been bitten or licked by 
another rabid animal ; this is so truly the case that hydrophobia 
is unknown in certain countries. In order to preserve a whole 
land from the disease, it is sufficient that a law should, as in 
Australia, compel every imported dog to be in quarantine for 
several months; he would then, if bitten by a mad dog before 
his departure, have ample time to die before infecting other 
animals. Norway and Lapland are equally free from rabies, a 
few good prophylactic measures being sufficient to avert the 

It will be objected that there must have been a first rabid 
dog originally. ' That," said Pasteur, " is a problem which 
cannot be solved in the present state of knowledge, for it par- 
takes of the great and unknown mystery of the origin of li; 

The audience followed with an impassioned curiosity the 
history of the stages followed by Pasteur on the road to his 
great discovery : the preliminary experiments, the demonstra- 
tion of the fact that the rabic virus invades the nervous centres, 
the culture of the virus within living animals, the attenua- 
tion of the rabic virus when passed from dogs to monkeys, ami 
simultaneously with this graduated attenuation, a converse 
process by successive passages from rabbit to rabbit, the ] 
sibility of obtaining in this way all the degrees of virulence, 
and finally the acquired certainty of having obtained a pre- 
ventive vaccine against canine hydrophobia. 

'Enthusiastic applause/' wrote the reporter of the Journal 
des D chats, "greeted the conclusion of the indefatigable 

In the course of one of the excursions arranged for the 
members of the C I vur had the pleasure of seeing 

his methods applied on a large scale, not as in Italy to the 
progress of serieioulture, but to that of the manufacture of 
beer. J. C. Jacobsen, a Danish citizen, whose name was 
celebrated in the whole of Europe by his munificent donations 
to science, had founded in 1817 the Carlsberg Brewery, now 

1884—1885 179 

one of the most important in the world ; at least 200,000 hecto- 
litres were now produced every year by the Carlsberg Brewery 
and the Ny Carlsberg branch of it, which was under the 
direction of Jacobsen's son. 

In 1879, Jacobsen, who was unknown to Pasteur, wrote to 
him, "I should be very much obliged if you would allow me 
to order from M. Paul Dubois, one of the great artists who do 
France so much credit, a marble bust of yourself, which I 
desire to place in the Carlsberg laboratory in token of the 
services rendered to chemistry, physiology, and beer-manu- 
facture, by your studies on fermentation, a foundation to all 
future progress in the brewer's trade." Paul Dubois' bust is a 
masterpiece : it is most characteristic of Pasteur — the deep 
thoughtful far-away look in his eyes, a somewhat stern expres- 
sion on his powerful features. 

Actuated, like his father, by a feeling of gratitude, the 
younger Jacobsen had placed a bronze reproduction of this 
bust in a niche in the wall of the brewery, at the entrance 
of the Pasteur Street, leading to Ny Carlsberg. 

This visit to the brewery was an object lesson to the members 
of the Congress, who were magnificently entertained by 
Jacobsen and his son ; no better demonstration was ever made 
of the services which industry may receive from science. In 
the great laboratory, the physiologist Hansen had succeeded 
in finding differences in yeast ; he had just separated from each 
other three kinds of yeast, each producing beer with a different 

The French scientists were delighted with the practical 
sense and delicate feelings of the Danish people. Though they 
had gone through bitter trials in 1864, though France, England, 
and Piussia had countenanced the unrighteous invasion, in 
the face of the old treaties which guaranteed to Denmark the 
possession of Schleswig, the diminished and impoverished 
nation had not given vent to barren recriminations or declama- 
tory protests. Proudly and silently sorrowing, the Danes 
had preserved their respect for the past, faith in justice and 
the cult of their great men. It is a strange thing that 
Shakespeare should have chosen that land of good sense and 
well-balanced reason for the surroundings of his mysterious 
hero, of all men the most haunted by the maddening enigma 
of destiny. 

Elsinore is but a short distance from Copenhagen, and no 

O D 


member of the Congress, especially among the English 
section, could have made up his mind to leave Denmark 
without visiting Hamlet's home. 

A Transport Company organized the visit to Elsinore for a 
day when the Congress had arranged to have a complete holi- 
day. Five steamers, gay with flags, were provided for the 
thousand medical men and their families, and accomplished 
the two hours' crossing to Elsinore on a lovely, clear day. with 
an absolutely calm sea. The scientific tourists landed at the 
foot of the old Kronborg Castle, ready for the lunch which was 
6erved out to them and which proved barely sufficient for their 
appetites ; there was not quite enough bread for the Frenchmen, 
proverbially bread-eaters, and the water, running a little short, 
had to be supplemented with champagne. 

Some of the visitors returned from a neighbouring wood, 
where they had been to see the stones of the supposed tomb of 
Hamlet, disappointed at having looked in vain for Ophelia's 
stream and for the willow tree which heard her sing her last 
song, her hands full of flowers. Evidently this place was but 
an imaginary scenery given by Shakespeare to the drama 
which stands like a point of interrogation before the mystery 
of human life ; but his life-giving art ha6 for ever made of 
Elsinore the place where Hamlet lived and suffered. 

Pasteur, to whom the Danish character, in its strength and 
simplicity, proved singularly attractive, remained in Copen- 
hagen for some time after the Congress was over. He had 
much pleasure in visiting the Thorwaldsen Museum. 
Copenhagen, after showering honours on the great artist during 
his lifetime, has continued to worship him after his death. 
Every statue, every plaster cast, is preserved in that Museum 
with extraordinary care^ Thorwaldsen himself lies in the 
midst of his works — his simple stone grave, covered with 
graceful ivy, is in one of the courtyards of the Museum. 

Pasteur went on to Arbois from Copenhagen. The 
laboratory he had built th< re not being large enough to take 
in rabid dogs, he dictated from his study the experiments 
to be carried out in Paris ; his carefully kept notebooks enabled 
him to know exactly how things were going on. His nephew, 
Adrien Loir, now a curator in the laboratory of Rue d'Ulm, 
1 gladly given up his holidays and remained in Paris with 
the faithful Eugene Viala. This excellent assistant had come 

1884—1885 181 

to Paris from Alais in 1871, at the request of Pasteur, who 
knew his family. Viala was then only twelve years old and 
could barely read and write. Pasteur sent him to an evening 
school and himself helped him with his studies ; the boy was 
very intelligent and willing to learn. He became most useful 
to Pasteur, who, in 1885, was glad to let him undertake a great 
deal of the laboratory work, under the guidance of M. Roux ; 
he was ultimately entrusted with all the trephining operations 
on dogs, rabbits, and guinea-pigs. 

The letters written to him by Pasteur in 1884 show the exact 
point reached at that moment by the investigations on hydro- 
phobia. Many people already thought those studies advanced 
enough to allow the method of treatment to be applied to 

Pasteur wrote to Viala on September 19, " Tell M. Adrien 
(Loir) to send the following telegram : ' Surgeon Symonds, 
Oxford, England. Operation on man still impossible. No 
possibility at present of sending attenuated virus.' See MM. 
Bourrel and Beraud, procure a dog which has died of street- 
rabies, and use its medulla to inoculate a new monkey, two 
guinea-pigs and two rabbits. ... I am afraid Nocard's 
dog cannot have been rabid ; even if you were sure that he 
was, you had better try those tests again. 

" Since M. Bourrel says he has several mad dogs at present, 
you might take two couple of new dogs to his kennels ; when 
he has a good biting dog, he can have a pair of our dogs bitten, 
after which you will treat one of them so as to make him 
refractory (carefully taking note of the time elapsed between 
the bites and the beginning of the treatment). Mind you keep 
notes of every new experiment undertaken, and write to me 
every other day at least." 

Pasteur pondered on the means of extinguishing hydrophobia 
or of merely diminishing its frequency. Could dogs be vacci- 
nated ? There are 100,000 dogs in Paris, about 2,500,000 
more in the provinces : vaccination necessitates several pre- 
ventive inoculations ; innumerable kennels would have to be 
built for the purpose, to say nothing of the expense of keeping 
the dogs and of providing a trained staff capable of performing 
the difficult and dangerous operations. And, as M. Nocard 
truly remarked, where were rabbits to be found in sufficient 
number for the vaccine emulsions? 

Optional vaccination did not seem more practicable : it could 

d d 2 


only be worked on a very restricted scale and was therefore of 
very little use in a general way. 

The main question was fche possibility of preventing hydro- 
phobia from occurring in a human being, previously bitten by a 
rabid dog. 

The Emperor of Brazil, who took the greatest interest in 
the doings of the Ecole Normale laboratory, having written to 
Pasteur asking when the preventive treatment could be appl 
to man, Pasteur answered as follows — 

" September 22. 

" Sire — Baron Itajuba, fche Minister for Brazil, has handed 
me the letter which Your Majesty has done me the honour of 
writing on August 21. The Academy welcomed with unani- 
mous sympathy your tribute to the memory of our illustrious 
colleague, M. Dumas; it will listen with similar pleasure to 
the words of regret which you desire me to express on the 
subject of M. Wurtz's premature death. 

" Your Majesty is kind enough to mention my studies on 
hydrophobia ; they are making good and uninterrupted pro- 
gress. I consider, however, that it will take me nearly two 
years more to bring them to a happy issue. . . . 

' What I want to do is to obtain prophylaxis of rabies after 

" Until now I have not dared to attempt anything on men, 
in spite of my own confidence in the result and the numerous 
opportunities afforded to me since my last reading at the 
Academy of Sciences. I fear too much that a failure might 
compromise the future, and I want first to accumulate success- 
ful cases on animals. Things in that direction are going very 
well indeed; I already have several examples of dogs made 
refractory after a rabietic bite. I take two dogs, cause them 
both to be bitten by a mad dog ; I vaccinate the one and leave 
the other without any treatment : the latter dies and the first 
remains perfectly well. 

"But even when I shall have multiplied examples of the 
prophylaxis of rabies in dogs, I think my hand will tremble 
when I go on to Mankind. It is here that the high and |>ower- 
ful initiative of the head of a State might intervene for the good 
of humanity. If I were a King, an Emperor, or even the 
President of a Republic, this is how I should exercise my right 
of pardoning criminals condemned to death. I should invit.- 
the counsel of a condemned man, on the eve of the day fixed 

1884—1885 183 

for his execution, to choose between certain death and an 
experiment which would consist in several preventive inocula- 
tions of rabic virus, in order to make the subject's constitution 
refractory to rabies. If he survived this experiment — and I 
am convinced that he would — his life would be saved and his 
punishment commuted to a lifelong surveillance, as a guarantee 
towards that society which had condemned him. 

" All condemned men would accept these conditions, death 
being their only terror. 

" This brings me to the question of cholera, of which Your 
Majesty also has the kindness to speak to me. Neither Dr. 
Koch nor Drs. Straus and Eoux have succeeded in giving 
cholera to animals, and therefore great uncertainty prevails 
regarding the bacillus to which Dr. Koch attributes the causa- 
tion of cholera. It ought to be possible to try and communicate 
cholera to criminals condemned to death, by the injection of 
cultures of that bacillus. When the disease declared itself, a 
test could be made of the remedies which are counselled as 
apparently most efficacious. 

"I attach so much importance to these measures, that, if 
Tour Majesty shared my views, I should willingly come to 
Rio Janeiro, notwithstanding my age and the state of my 
health, in order to undertake such studies on the prophylaxis 
of hydrophobia and the contagion of cholera and its remedies. 

"I am, with profound respect, Your Majesty's humble and 
obedient servant." 

In other times, the right of pardon could be exercised in 
the form of a chance of life offered to a criminal lending him- 
self to an experiment. Louis XVI, having admired a tire 
balloon rising above Versailles, thought of proposing to two 
condemned men that they should attempt to go up in one. 
But Pilatre des Eoziers, whose ambition it was to be the first 
aeronaut, was indignant at the thought that "vile criminals 
should be the first to rise up in the air." He won his cause, 
and in November, 1783, he organized an ascent at the Muette 
which lasted twenty minutes. 

In England, in the eighteenth century, before Jenner's dis- 
covery, successful attempts had been made at the direct 
inoculation of small-pox. In some historical and medical 
Researches on Vaccine, published in 1803, Husson relates that 
the King of England, wishing to have the members of his 
family inoculated, began by having the method tried on six 


criminals condemned to death; they were all saved, and the 
Royal Family submitted to inoculation. 

There is undoubtedly a beautiful aspect of that idea of 
utilizing the fate of a criminal for the cause of Humanity. But 
in our modern laws no such liberty is left to Justice, which 
has no power to invent new punishments, or to enter into a 
bargain with a condemned criminal. 

Before his departure from Arbois, Pasteur encountered fresh 
and unforeseen obstacles. The successful opposition of the 
inhabitants of Meudon had inspired those of St. Cloud, Ville 
d'Avray, Vaucresson, Marnes, and Garches with the idea of 
resisting in their turn the installation of Pasteur's kennels at 
Villeneuve l'Etang. People spoke of public danger, of children 
exposed to meet ferocious rabid dogs wandering loose about 
the park, of popular Sundays spoilt, picnickers disturbed, 
etc., etc. 

A former pupil of Pasteur's at the Strasburg Faculty, M. 
Christen, now a Town Councillor at Vaucresson, warned 
Pasteur of all this excitement, adding that he personally was 
ready to do his best to calm the terrors of his townspeople. 

Pasteur answered, thanking him for his efforts. ' . . . I 
shall be back in Paris on October 24, and on the morning of 
the twenty-fifth and following days I shall be pleased to see 
any one desiring information on the subject. . . . But you 
may at once assure your frightened neighbours, Sir, that there 
will be no mad dogs at Villeneuve l'Etang, but only dogs made 
refractory to rabies. Not having enough room in my labora- 
tory, I am actually obliged to quarter on various veterinary 
surgeons those dogs, which I should like to enclose in covered 
kennels, quite safely secured, you may be sure." 

Pasteur, writing about this to his son, could not help saying, 
" Months of fine weather have been wasted! This will keep 
my plans back almost a year." 

Little by little, in spite of the opposition which burst out now 
and again, calm was again re-established. French good sense 
and appreciation of great things got the better of the struggle; 
in January, 1885, Pasteur was able to go to Villeneuve l'Etang 
to superintend the arrangements. The old stables were turned 
into an immense kennel, paved with asphalte. A wide passage 
went from one end to the other, on each side of which accom- 
modation for sixty dogs was arranged behind a double barrier 
of wire netting. 

1884—1885 185 

The subject of hydrophobia goes back to the remotest 
antiquity ; one of Homer's warriors calls Hector a mad dog. 
The supposed allusions to it to be found in Hippocrates are of 
the vaguest, but Aristotle is quite explicit when speaking of 
canine rabies and of its transmission from one animal to the 
other through bites. He gives expression, however, to the 
singular opinion that man is not subject to it. More than 
three hundred years later we come to Celsus, who describes 
this disease, unknown or unnoticed until then. 'The 
patient," said Celsus, " is tortured at the same time by thirst 
and by an invincible repulsion towards water." He counselled 
cauterization of the wound with a red-hot iron and also with 
various caustics and corrosives. 

Pliny the Elder, a worthy precursor of village quacks, recom- 
mended the livers of mad dogs as a cure ; it was not a suc- 
cessful one. Galen, who opposed this, had a no less singular 
recipe, a compound of cray-fish eyes. Later, the shrine of 
St. Hubert in Belgium was credited with miraculous cures ; 
this superstition is still extant. 

Sea bathing, unknown in France until the reign of Louis 
XIV, became a fashionable cure for hydrophobia, Dieppe sands 
being supposed to offer wonderful curing properties. 

In 1780 a prize was offered for the best method of treating 
hydrophobia, and won by a pamphlet entitled Dissertation sur 
la Rage, written by a surgeon-major of the name of Le Eoux. 

This very sensible treatise concluded by recommending 
cauterization, now long forgotten, instead of the various quack 
remedies which had so long been in vogue, and the use of 
butter of antimony. 

Le Eoux did not allude in his paper to certain tenacious and 
cruel prejudices, which had caused several hydrophobic persons, 
or persons merely suspected of hydroprobia, to be killed like 
wild beasts, shot, poisoned, strangled, or suffocated. 

It was supposed in some places that hydrophobia could be 
transmitted through the mere contact of the saliva or even by 
the breath of the victims ; people who had been bitten were in 
terror of what might be done to them. A girl, bitten by a 
mad dog and taken to the Hotel Dieu Hospital on May 8, 
1780, begged that she might not be suffocated ! 

Those dreadful occurrences must have been only too frequent, 
for, in 1810, a philosopher asked the Government to enact a 
Bill in the following terms : "It is forbidden, under pain of 


death, to strangle, suffocate, bleed to death, or in any other way 
murder individuals suffering from rabies, hydrophobia, or any 
disease causing fits, convulsions, furious and dangerous mad- 
ness ; all necessary precautions against them being taken by 
families or public authorities." 

In 1819, newspapers related the death of an unfortunate 
hydrophobe, smothered between two mattresses; it was said a 
propos of this murder that "it is the doctor's duty to repeat 
that this disease cannot be transmitted from man to man, and 
that there is therefore no danger in nursing hydrophobia 
patients." Though old and fantastic remedies were still in 
vogue in remote country places, cauterization was the most 
frequently employed; if the wounds were somewhat deep, it 
was recommended to use long, sharp and pointed needles, and 
to push them well in, even if the wound was on the face. 

One of Pasteur's childish recollections (it happened in 
October, 1831) was the impression of terror produced through- 
out the Jura by the advent of a rabid wolf who went biting 
men and beasts on his way. Pasteur had seen an Arboisian of 
the name of Nicole being cauterized with a red-hot iron at 
the smithy near his father's house. The persons who had 
been bitten on the hands and head succumbed to hydro- 
phobia, some of them amidst horrible sufferings; there were 
eight victims in the immediate neighbourhood. Nicole was 
saved. For years the whole region remained in dread of that 

mad wolf. 

The long period of incubation encouraged people to hope 
that some preventive means might be found, instead of the 
painful operation of cauterization ; some doctors attempted 
inoculating another poison, a viper's venom for instance, to 
neutralize the rabic virus — needless to say with fatal results. 
In 1852 a reward was promised by the Government to the 
finder of a remedy against hydrophobia ; all the old quackeries 
came to light again, even Galen's remedy of cray-fish ey 

Bouchardat, who had to report to the Academy on these 
remedies, considered them of no value whatever; his con- 
clusion was that cauterization was the only prophylactic treat- 
ment of hydrophobia. 

Such was also Bouley's opinion, eighteen years later, when 

wrote that the object to keep in view was the quickest 

possible destrurtion of the tissues touched by rabietic saliva. 

Failing an iron heated to a light red heat, or the sprinkling of 

1884—1885 187 

gunpowder over the wound and setting a match to it, he recom- 
mended caustics, such as nitric acid, sulphuric acid, hydro- 
chloric acid, potassa fusa, butter of antimony, corrosive sub- 
limate, and nitrate of silver. 

Thus, after centuries had passed, and numberless remedies 
had been tried, no progress had been made, and nothing better 
had been found than cauterization, as indicated by Celsus in 
the first century. 

As to the origin of rabies, it remained unknown and was 
erroneously attributed to divers causes. Spontaneity was still 
believed in. Bouley himself did not absolutely reject the idea 
of it, for he said in 1870 : " In the immense majority of cases, 
this disease proceeds from contagion; out of 1,000 rabid dogs, 
999 at least owe their condition to inoculation by a bite." 

Pasteur was anxious to uproot this fallacy, as also another 
very serious error, vigorously opposed by Bouley, by M. 
Nocard, and by another veterinary surgeon in a Manual on 
Rabies, published in 1882, and still as tenacious as most pre- 
judices, viz., that the word hydrophobia is synonymous with 
rabies. The rabid dog is not hydrophobe, he does not abhor 
water. The word is applicable to rabid human beings, but is 
false concerning rabid dogs. 

Many people in the country, constantly seeing Pasteur's 
name associated with the word rabies, fancied that he was a 
consulting veterinary surgeon, and pestered him with letters 
full of questions. What was to be done to a dog whose manner 
seemed strange, though there was no evidence of a suspicious 
bite? Should he be shot? " No," answered Pasteur, " shut 
him up securely, and he will soon die if he is really mad." 
Some dog owners hesitated to destroy a dog manifestly bitten 
by a mad dog. "It is such a good dog! " "The law is 
absolute," answered Pasteur; " every dog bitten by a mad dog 
must be destroyed at once." And it irritated him that village 
mayors should close their eyes to the non-observance of the law, 
and thus contribute to a recrudescence of rabies. 

Pasteur wasted his precious time answering all those letters. 
On March 28, 1885, he wrote to his friend Jules Vercel — 

"Alas! we shall not be able to go to Arbois for Easter; I 
shall be busy for some time settling down, or rather settling 
my dogs down at Villeneuve l'Etang. I also have some new 
experiments on rabies on hand which will take some months. 


I am demonstrating this year that dogs can be vaccinated, or 
made refractory to rabies after they have been bitten by m 

' I have Dot yet dared to treat human beings after bit. s from 
rabid dogs ; but the time is not far off, and I am much inclined 
to begin by myself— inoculating myself with rabies, and then 
arresting the consequences; for I am beginning to feel v 
sure of my results." 

Pasteur gave more details three days later, in a letter to his 
son, then Secretary of the French Embassy at the Quirinal — 

' The experiments before the Rabies Commission were 
resumed on March 10; they are now being carried out, and 
the Commission has already held six sittings ; the seventh will 
take place to-day. 

' As I only submit to it results which I look upon as 
acquired, this gives me a surplus of work to do; for those 
control experiments are added to those I am now carrying out. 
For I am continuing my researches, trying to discover new 
principles, and hardening myself by habit and by increased 
conviction in order to attempt preventive inoculations on man 
after a bite. 

"The Commission's experiments have led to no result so 
far, for, as you know, weeks have to pass before any results 
occur. But no untoward incident has occurred up to now ; and 
if all continues equally well, the Commission's Beoond report 
will be as favorable as that of last year, which left nothing to 
be desired. 

' I am equally satisfied with my nev rimenta in this 

difficult study. Perhaps practical application on a large sea 1<* 
may not be far off. ..." 

In May, everything at Villeneuve 1'Etang was ready for the 
reception of sixty dogs. Fifty of them, already made refrac- 
tory to bites or rabic inoculation, were successively accommo- 
dated in the immense kennel, whore each had his cell and his 
experiment number. They had been made refractory by being 
inoculated with fragments of medulla, which had hung for a 
fortnight in a phial, and of which the virulence was extin- 
guished, after which further inoculations had been mad 
gradually increasing in virulence until the highest degree of it 
had again been reached. 

All those dogs, which were to be periodically taken bae! 
Paris for inoculations or bite tests, in order to see what was 

1884—1885 189 

the duration of the immunity conferred, were stray dogs picked 
up by the police. They were of various breeds, and showed 
every variety of character, some of them gentle and affectionate, 
others vicious and growling, some confiding, some shrinking, 
as if the recollection of chloroform and the laboratory was dis- 
agreeable to them. They showed some natural impatience of 
their enforced captivity, only interrupted by a short daily run. 
One of them, however, was promoted to the post of house- 
dog, and loosened every night ; he excited much envy among 
his congeners. The dogs were very well cared for by a retired 
gendarme, an excellent man of the name of Pernin. 

A lover of animals might have drawn an interesting contrast 
between the fate of those laboratory dogs, living and dying for 
the good of humanity, and that of the dogs buried in the neigh- 
bouring dogs' cemetery at Bagatelle, founded by Sir Eichard 
Wallace, the great English philanthropist. Here lay toy dogs, 
lap dogs, drawing-room dogs, cherished and coddled during 
their useless lives, and luxuriously buried after their useless 
deaths, while the dead bodies of the others went to the 
knacker's yard. 

Eabbit hutches and guinea-pig cages leaned against the dogs' 
palace. Pasteur, having seen to the comfort of his animals, 
now thought of himself ; it was frequently necessary that he 
should come to spend two or three days at Villeneuve l'Etang. 
The official architect thought of repairing part of the little 
palace of Villeneuve, which was in a very bad state of decay. 
But Pasteur preferred to have some rooms near the stables put 
into repair, which had formerly been used for non-commis- 
sioned officers of the Cent Gardes ; there was less to do to them , 
and the position was convenient. The roof, windows, and 
doors were renovated, and some cheap paper hung on the walls 
inside. "This is certainly not luxurious!" exclaimed an 
astonished millionaire, who came to see Pasteur one day on 
his way to his own splendid villa at Marly. 

On May 29 Pasteur wrote to his son — 
' I thought I should have done with rabies by the end of 
April ; I must postpone my hopes till the end of July. Yet 
I have not remained stationary; but, in these difficult studies, 
one is far from the goal as long as the last word, the last 
decisive proof is not acquired. What I aspire to is the pos- 
sibility of treating a man after a bite with no fear of accidents. 

" I have never had so many subjects of experiment on hand— 


sixty dogs at Villeneuve l'Etang, forty at Rollin, ten at Fregis', 
fifteen at Bourrel's, and I deplore having no more kennels at 
my disposal. 

' What do you say of the Rue Pasteur in the large city of 
Lille? The news has given me very great pleasure." 

What Pasteur briefly called " Rollin " in this letter was the 
former Lycte Rollin, the old buildings of which had been 
transformed into outhouses for his laboratory. Large cages 
had been set up in the old courtyard, and the place was like a 
farm, with its population of hens, rabbits, and guinea-pigs. 

Two series of experiments were being carried out on those 
126 dogs. The first consisted in making dogs refractory to 
rabies by preventive inoculations ; the second in preventing 
the onset of rabies in dogs bitten or subjected to inoculation. 


Pasteur had the power of concentrating his thoughts to 
such a degree that he often, when absorbed in one idea, became 
absolutely unconscious of what took place around him. At 
one of the meetings of the Academie Francaise, whilst the 
Dictionary was being discussed, he scribbled the following note 
on a stray sheet of paper — 

" I do not know how to hide my ideas from those who work 
with me; still, I wish I could have kept those I am going to 
express a little longer to myself. The experiments have 
already begun which will decide them. 

" It concerns rabies, but the results might be general. 

"I am inclined to think that the virus which is considered 
rabic may be accompanied by a substance which, by impregnat- 
ing the nervous system, would make it unsuitable for the 
culture of the microbe. Thence vaccinal immunity. If that 
is so, the theory might be a general one : it would be a 
stupendous discovery. 

" I have just met Chamberland in the Eue Gay-Lussac, and 
explained to him this view and my experiments. He was much 
struck, and asked my permission to make at once on anthrax 
the experiment I am about to make on rabies as soon as the 
dog and the culture rabbits are dead. Eoux, the day before 
yesterday, was equally struck. 

" Academie Francaise, Thursday, January 29, 1885." 

Could that vaccinal substance associated with the rabic virus 
be isolated? In the meanwhile a main fact was acquired, 
that of preventive inoculation, since Pasteur was sure of his 
series of dogs rendered refractory to rabies after a bite. Months 
were going by without bringing an answer to the question 
" Why ? " of the antirabic vaccination, as mysterious as the 
44 Why ? " of Jennerian vaccination. 


On Monday, July 6, Pasteur saw a little Alsatian boy, 
Joseph Meister, enter his laboratory, accompanied by his 
mother. He was only nine years old, and had been bill 
two days before by a mad dog at Meissengott, near Schlestedt. 

The child, going alone to school by a little by-road, had 
been attacked by a furious dog and thrown to the ground. Too 
small to defend himself, he hail only thought of co%'ering his 
face with his hands. A bricklayer, seeing the scene from a 
distance, arrived, and succeeded in beating the dog off with an 
iron bar; he picked up the boy, covered with blood and 
The dog went back to his master, Theodore Vone, a grocer at 
Meissengott, whom he bit on the arm. Vone seized a gun and 
shot the animal, whose stomach was found to be full of ha v. 
straw, pieces of wood, etc. When little Meister's parents 
heard all these details they went, full of anxiety, to consult Dr. 
Weber, at Ville, that same evening. After cauterizing the 
wounds with carbolic, Dr. Weber advised Mme. Y to 

6tart for Paris, where she could relate the facts to one who v. 
not a physician, but who would be the best judge of what could 
be done in such a serious case. Theodore Vone, anxious on 
his own and on the child's account, decided to come a! 

Pasteur reassured him ; his clothes had wiped off the d< 
saliva, and his shirt-sleeve was intact. He might safely go 
back to Alsaee, and he promptly did so. 

Pasteur's emotion was great at the Bight of the four* 
wounds of the little boy, who suffered so much that he could 
hardly walk. What should he do for this child? could he risk 
preventive treatment which had been constantly successful 
on his dogs? Tasteur v>as divided between his hopes and his 
scruples, painful in their acnteness. Before deciding on a 
course of action, he made arrangements for the comfort of this 
poor woman and her child, alone in Paris, and gave them an 
appointment for 5 o'clock, after the Institute meeting. 11. • did 
not wish to attempt anything without having seen Vulpian 
and talked it over with him. Since the Babies Commission 
had been constituted, Pasteur had formed a growin em 

for the great judgment of Vulpian. who. in his lectures ->:i the 
general and comparative physiology of the nervous system, 
had already mentioned the profil to human climes to be drawn 
from experimenting on animals. 

His was a most prudent mind, always seeing all the asp 
of a problem. The man was worthy of the scientist : he was 

1885—1888 193 

absolutely straightforward, and of a discreet and active kind- 
ness. He was passionately fond of work, and had recourse to 
it when smitten by a deep sorrow. 

Vulpian expressed the opinion that Pasteur's experiments 
on dogs were sufficiently conclusive to authorize him to foresee 
the same success in human pathology. Why not try this treat- 
ment? added the professor, usually so reserved. Was there 
any other efficacious treatment against hydrophobia? If at 
least the cauterizations had been made with a red-hot iron ! 
but what was the good of carbolic acid twelve hours after the 
accident. If the almost certain danger which threatened the 
boy were weighed against the chances of snatching him from 
death, Pasteur would see that it was more than a right, that 
it was a duty to apply antirabic inoculation to little Meister. 

This was also the opinion of Dr. Grancher, whom Pasteur 
consulted. M. Grancher worked at the laboratory ; he and 
Dr. Straus might claim to be the two first French physicians 
who took up the study of bacteriology ; these novel studies 
fascinated him, and he was drawn to Pasteur by the deepest 
admiration and by a strong affection, which Pasteur thoroughly 

Vulpian and M. Grancher examined little Meister in the 
evening, and, seeing the number of bites, some of which, on 
one hand especially, were very deep, they decided on perform- 
ing the first inoculation immediately ; the substance chosen 
was fourteen days old and had quite lost its virulence : it was 
to be followed by further inoculations gradually increasing in 

It was a very slight operation, a mere injection into the 
side (by means of a Pravaz syringe) of a few drops of a liquid 
prepared with some fragments of medulla oblongata. The 
child, who cried very much before the operation, soon dried 
his tears when he found the slight prick was all that he had 
to undergo. 

Pasteur had had a bedroom comfortably arranged for the 
mother and child in the old Eollin College, and the little boy 
was very happy amidst the various animals — chickens, rabbit>. 
white mice, guinea-pigs, etc. ; he begged and easily obtained 
of Pasteur the life of several of the youngest of them. 

" All is going well," Pasteur wrote to his son-in-law on 
July 11 : " the child sleeps well, has a good appetite, and the 
inoculated matter is absorbed into the system from one day 


to another without leaving a trace. It is true that I have not 
yet come to the test inoculations, which will take place on 
Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. If the lad keeps well 
during the three following weeks, I think the experiment will 
be safe to succeed. I shall send the child and his mother back- 
to Meissengott (near Schlestadt) in any case on August 1 . 
giving these pood people detailed instruction as to the observa- 
tions they are to record for me. I shall make no statement 
before the end of the vacation." 

But, as the inoculations were becoming more virul 
Pasteur became a prey to anxiety : " My dear children," wrote 
Mme. Pasteur, "your father has had another bad night ; he is 
dreading the last inoculations on the child. And yet there can 
be no drawing back now ! The boy continues in perfect 

Renewed hopes were expressed in the following letter from 
Pasteur — 

' My dear Rene, I think great things are coming to 
Joseph Meister has just left the laboratory. The thr> 
inoculations have left some pink marks under the skin, gradu- 
ally widening and not at all tender. There is some action, 
which is becoming more intense as we approach the final 
inoculation, which will take place on Thursday. July 10. 
lad is very well this morning, and has slept well, though 
slightly restless; he has a good appetite and no feverishn> 
II" hid a slight hysterical attack J lay.*' 

The letter ended with an affectionate invitation. " Perhaps 
one of the gnat medical facts of the century is going to t I 
place ; you would regret not having seen it ! " 

Pasteur was going through a succession of hopes, f< 
anguish, and an ardent yearning to snatch little Meister fr 
death; he could no longer work. At nights, feverish visions 
came to him of this child whom he had seen playing in I 
garden, suffocating in the mad struggles of hydrophobia, like 
the dying child he had seen at the Hopital Trousseau in 1880. 
Vainly his experimental genius assured him that the virus of 
that most terrible of diseases was about to be vanquished, that 
humanity was about to be delivered from this dread horror — 
his human tenderness was Btronger than all. his accustomed 
ipatbv for the sufferings and anxieties of others was 
for the nonce centred in " the dear lad 

The treatment last I in days; Meister was inocul ft! 

1885—1888 195 

twelve times. The virulence of the medulla used was tested by 
trephinings on rabbits, and proved to be gradually stronger. 
Pasteur even inoculated on July 16, at 11 a.m., some medulla 
only one day old, bound to give hydrophobia to rabbits after 
only seven days' incubation ; it was the surest test of the 
immunity and preservation due to the treatment. 

Cured from his wounds, delighted with all he saw, gaily 
running about as if he had been in his own Alsatian farm, 
little Meister, whose blue eyes now showed neither fear nor 
shyness, merrily received the last inoculation; in the evening, 
after claiming a kiss from " Dear Monsieur Pasteur," as he 
called him, he went to bed and slept peacefully. Pasteur spent 
a terrible night of insomnia ; in those slow dark hours of night 
when all vision is distorted, Pasteur, losing sight of the 
accumulation of experiments which guaranteed his success, 
imagined that the little boy would die. 

The treatment being now completed, Pasteur left little 
Meister to the care of Dr. Grancher (the lad was not to return 
to Alsace, until July 27) and consented to take a few days' rest. 
He spent them with his daughter in a quiet, almost deserted 
country place in Burgundy, but without however finding much 
restfulness in the beautiful peaceful scenery ; he lived in con- 
stant expectation of Dr. Grancher's daily telegram or letter 
containing news of Joseph Meister. 

By the time he went to the Jura, Pasteur's fears had almost 
disappeared. He wrote from Arbois to his son August 3, 
1885 : " Very good news last night of the bitten lad. I am 
looking forward with great hopes to the time when I can draw a 
conclusion. It will be thirty-one days to-morrow since he was 

On August 20, six weeks before the new elections of Deputies, 
Leon Say, Pasteur's colleague at the Academie Francaise, 
wrote to him that many Beauce agricultors were anxious to put 
his name down on the list of candidates, as a recognition of the 
services rendered by science. A few months before, Jules 
Simon had thought Pasteur might be elected as a Life Senator, 
but Pasteur had refused to be convinced. He now replied to 
Leon Say — 

" Your proposal touches me very much and it would be 
agreeable to me to owe a Deputy's mandate to electors, several 
of whom have applied the results of my investigations. But 

B B 


politics frighten me and I have already refused a candidature 
in the Jura and a Beat in the Senate in the course of this year. 
'I might be tempted perhaps, if I no longer felt active 
enough for my laboratory work. But I still feel equal to 
further researches, and on my return to Paris, I shall be 
organizing a 'service ' against rabies which will absorb all my 
energies. I now possess a very perfect method of prophylaxis 
against that terrible disease, a method equally adapted to 
human brings and to dogs, and by which your much afflicted 
department will be one of the first to benefit. 

"Before my departure for Jura I dared to treat a poor 
little nine-year-old lad whose mother brought him to me from 
Alsace, where he had been attacked on the 4th ult., and 
bitten on the thighs, legs, and hand in such a manner 
that hydrophobia would have been inevitable. He remains 
in perfect health." 

Whilst many political speeches were being prepared, Pasteur 
was thinking over a literary speech. He had been requested by 
the Academic Francaise to welcome Joseph Bertrand, elected 
in place of J. B. Dumas — the eulogium of a scientist, spok< n 
by one scientist, himself welcomed by another scientist. This 
was an unusual programme for the Academic Francaise, perhaps 
too unusual in the eyes of Pasteur, who did not think himself 
worthy of speaking in the name of the Academic Such was 
his modesty ; he forgot that amongst the savants who had been 
members of the Acad^mie, several, such as Fontenelle, Cuvier, 
J. B. Dumas, etc., had published immortal pages, and that some 
extracts from his own works would one day become classical. 

The vacation gave him time to read over the writings of 
his beloved teacher, and also to study the life and works of 
Joseph Bertrand. already his colleague at the Acad, mie des 

Bertrand's election had been simple and easy, like everything 
he had undertaken since his birth. It seemed as if a good fairy 
bad leant over his cradle and whispered to him, "Thou shall 
know many things, without having had to learn them." It 
a fact that he could read without having held a book in his 
hands. He was ill and in bed whilst his brother Alexander 
was being taught to read ; he listened to the lessons and kept the 
various combinations o! Letters in Ins mind. When he became 
convalescent, his parents brought him a book of Natural His- 
tory so that he might look at the pictures. He took the volume 



and read from it fluently ; he was not five years old. He learnt 
the elements of geometry very much in the same way. 

Pasteur in his speech thus described Joseph Bertrand's child- 
hood : " At ten years old you were already celebrated, and it was 
prophesied that you would pass at the head of the list into the 
Ecole Polytechnique and become a member of the Academy of 
Sciences? No one doubted this, not even yourself. You were 
indeed a child prodigy. Sometimes it amused you to hide in a 
class of higher mathematics, and when the Professor pro- 
pounded a difficult problem that no one could solve, one of the 
students would triumphantly lift you in his arms, stand you on 
a chair so that you might reach the board, and you would then 
give the required solution with a calm assurance, in the midst 
of applause from the professors and pupils." 

Pasteur, whose every progress had been painfully acquired, 
admired the ease with which Bertrand had passed through the 
first stages of his career. At an age when marbles and india- 
rubber balls are usually an important interest, Bertrand walked 
merrily to the Jardin des Plantes to attend a course of lectures 
by Gay-Lussac. A few hours later, he might be seen at the 
Sorbonne, listening with interest to Saint Marc Girardin, the 
literary moralist. The next day, he would go to a lecture on 
Comparative Legislation ; never was so young a child seen in 
such serious places. He borrowed as many books from the 
Institute library as Biot himself ; he learnt whole passages by 
heart, merely by glancing at them. He became a doctor ks 
sciences at sixteen, and a Member of the Institute at thirty-four. 

Besides his personal works — such as those on Analytic 
Mechanics, which place him in the very first rank — his teach- 
ing had been brought to bear during forty years on all branches 
of mathematics. Bertrand's life, apparently so happy, had 
been saddened by the irreparable loss, during the Commune, 
of a great many precious notes, letters, and manuscripts, which 
had been burnt with the house where he had left them. Dis- 
couraged by this ruin of ten years' work, he had given way to a 
tendency to writing slight popular articles, of high literary 
merit, instead of continuing his deeper scientific work. His 
eulogy of J. B. Dumas was not quite seriously enthusiastic 
enough to please Pasteur, who had a veritable cult for the 
memory of his old teacher, and who eagerly grasped this oppor- 
tunity of speaking again of J. B. Dumas' influence on himself, 
of his admirable scientific discoveries, and of his political duties, 

E E 2 


jndertaken in the hope of being useful to Science, but often 
proving a source of disappointment. 

Pasteur enjoyed looking back on the beloved memory of 
J. B. Dumas, as he sat preparing his speech in his study at 
Arbois, looking out on the familiar landscape of his childhood, 
where the progress of practical science was evidenced by the 
occasional passing, through the distant pine woods, of the white 
smoke of the Switzerland express. 

When in his laboratory in Paris, Pasteur hated to be disturbed 
whilst making experiments or writing out notes of his work. 
Any visitor was unwelcome ; one day that some one was attempt- 
ing to force his way in, M. Roux was amused at seeing 
Pasteur — vexed at being disturbed and anxious not to pain the 
visitor— come out to say imploringly, " Oh ! not now, please ! 
I am too busy ! " 

"When Chamberland and I," writes Dr. Roux, 'were 
engaged in an interesting occupation, he mounted guard before 
us, and when, through the glazed doors, he saw people coming, 
he himself would go and meet them in order to send them away. 
He showed so artlessly that his sole thought was for the work, 
that no one ever could be offended." 

But, at Arbois, where he only spent his holidays, he did not 
exercise so much severity; any one could come in who liked. 
He received in the morning a constant stream of visitors, b 
ging for advice, recommendations, interviews, etc. 

"It is both comical and touching," wrote M. Girard, a local 
journalist. " to see the opinion the vineyard labourers have of 
him. These good people have heard M. Pasteur's name in 
connection with the diseases of wine, and they look upon 1. 
as a sort of wine doctor. It they notice a barrel of wine getting 
60ur. they knock at the savant's door, bottle in hand ; this door 
is never closed to them. Peasants are not precise in their 1 
gaage; they do not know how to begin their explanations or 
how to finish them. M. Pasteur, ever calm and serious, listens 
to the very end, takes the bottle and studies it at his leisure. 
A week later, the wine is 'cured.' " 

He was consulted also on many other subjects — virus, silk- 
worms, rabies, cholera, swine-fewr. etc. ; many took him for a 
physician. Whilst tellii qq of their mistake, he yei di 1 

everything he could for them. 

During this summer of 1885, he had the melancholy joy of 
seeing a bust erected in the village of Monay to the memory of 

1885—1888 199 

a beloved friend of his, J. J. Perraud, a great and inspired 
sculptor, who had died in 1876. Perraud, whose magnificent 
statue of Despair is now at the Louvre, had had a sad life, and, 
on his lonely death-bed (he was a widower, with no children), 
Pasteur's tender sympathy had been an unspeakable comfort. 
Pasteur now took a leading part in the celebration of his friend's 
fame, and was glad to speak to the assembled villagers at Monay 
of the great and disinterested artist who had been born in their 

On his return to Paris, Pasteur found himself obliged to 
hasten the organization of a " service " for the preventive treat- 
ment of hydrophobia after a bite. The Mayors of Villers-Farlay, 
in the Jura, wrote to him that, on October 14, a shepherd had 
been cruelly bitten by a rabid dog. 

Six little shepherd boys were watching over their sheep in 
a meadow ; suddenly they saw a large dog passing along the 
road, with hanging, foaming jaws. 

" A mad dog ! " they exclaimed. The dog, seeing the chil- 
dren, left the road and charged them ; they ran away shrieking, 
but the eldest of them, J. B. Jupille, fourteen years of age, 
bravely turned back in order to protect the flight of his comrades. 
Armed with his whip, he confronted the infuriated animal, 
who flew at him and seized his left hand. Jupille, wrestling 
with the dog, succeeded in kneeling on him, and forcing its 
jaws open in order to disengage his left hand ; in so doing, his 
right hand was seriously bitten in its turn ; finally, having been 
able to get hold of the animal by the neck, Jupille called to his 
little brother to pick up his whip, which had fallen during the 
struggle, and securely fastened the dog's jaws with the lash. 
He then took his wooden sabot, with which he battered the dog's 
head, after which, in order to be sure that it could do no further 
harm, he dragged the body down to a little stream in the 
meadow, and held the head under water for several minutes. 
Death being now certain, and all danger removed from his com- 
rades, Jupille returned to Villers-Farlay. 

Whilst the boy's wounds were being bandaged, the dog's 
carcase was fetched, and a necropsy took place the next day. 
The two veterinary surgeons who examined the body had not 
the slightest hesitation in declaring that the dog was rabid. 

The Mayor of Villers-Farlay, who had been to see Pasteur 
curing the summer, wrote to tell him that this lad would die 


a victim of his own courage unless the new treatment inter- 
vened. The answer came immediately : Pasteur declared that, 
after five years' study, he had succeeded in making dogs refrac- 
tory to rabies, even six or eight days after being bitten; that 
he had only once yet applied his method to a human being, but 
that once with success, in the case of little Meister, and that, 
if Jupille's family consented, the boy might be sent to him. 
" I shall keep him near me in a room of my laboratory ; he will 
be watched and need not go to bed ; he will merely receive a 
daily prick, not more painful than a pin-prick." 

The family, on hearing this letter, came to an immediate 
decision ; but, between the day when he was bitten and Jupille's 
arrival in Paris, six whole days had elapsed, whilst in Meister's 
case there had only been two and a half ! 

Yet, however great were Pasteur's fears for the life of this 
tall lad, who seemed quite surprised when congratulated on his 
courageous conduct, they were not what they had been in the 
first instance — he felt much greater confidence. 

A few days later, on October 26, Pasteur in a statement at 
the Academy of Sciences described the treatment followed foi 
Meister. Three months and three days had passed, and the 
child remained perfectly well. Then he spoke of his new 
attempt. Vulpian rose — 

'The Academy will not be surprised," he said, "if, as a 
member of the Medical and Surgical Section, I ask to be allowed 
to express the feelings of admiration inspired in me by M. 
Pasteur's statement. I feel certain that those feelings will be 
shared by the whole of the medical profession. 

' Hydrophobia, that dread disease against which all thera- 
peutic measures had hitherto failed, has at last found a remedy. 
M. Pasteur, who has been preceded by no one in this path, has 
been led by a series of investigations unceasingly carried on 
for several years, to create a method of treatment, by means 
of which the development of hydrophobia can infallibly be j 
vented in a patient recently bitten by a rabid dog. I say 
infallibly, because, after what 1 have seen in M. Pasteur's 
laboratory, I do not doubt the constant success of this tn I 
ment when it is put into full practice a few days only after a 
rabic bite. 

'It is now necessary to sec about organizing an installation 
for the treatment of hydrophobia by M. Pasteur's method. 
Every person bitten by a rabid dog must be given the oppor- 

1885—1888 201 

tunity of benefiting by this great discovery, which will seal the 
fame of our illustrious colleague and bring glory to our whole 

Pasteur had ended his reading by a touching description of 
Jupille's action, leaving the Assembly under the impression of 
that boy of fourteen, sacrificing himself to save his companions. 
An Academician, Baron Larrey, whose authority was rendered 
all the greater by his calmness, dignity, and moderation, rose 
to speak. After acknowledging the importance of Pasteur's 
discovery, Larrey continued, " The sudden inspiration, agility 
and courage, with which the ferocious dog was muzzled, and 
thus made incapable of committing further injury to 
bystanders, . . . such an act of bravery deserves to be 
rewarded. I therefore have the honour of begging the 
Academie des Sciences to recommend to the Academie 
Francaise this young shepherd, who, by giving such a generous 
example of courage and devotion, has well deserved a Montyon 

Bouley, then chairman of the Academy, rose to speak in his 
turn — 

" We are entitled to say that the date of the present meeting 
will remain for ever memorable in the history of medicine, and 
glorious for French science ; for it is that of one of the greatest 
steps ever accomplished in the medical order of things — a pro- 
gress realized by the discovery of an efficacious means of pre- 
ventive treatment for a disease, the incurable nature of which 
was a legacy handed down by one century to another. From 
this day, humanity is armed with a means of fighting the fatal 
disease of hydrophobia and of preventing its onset. It is to M. 
Pasteur that we owe this, and we could not feel too much 
admiration or too much gratitude for the efforts on his part 
which have led to such a magnificent result. ..." 

Five years previously, Bouley, in the annual combined public 
meeting of the five Academies, had proclaimed his enthusiasm 
for the discovery of the vaccination of anthrax. But on hear- 
ing him again on this October day, in 1885, his colleagues 
could not but be painfully struck by the change in him ; his 
voice was weak, his face thin and pale. He was dying of an 
affection of the heart, and quite aware of it, but he was sus- 
tained by a wonderful energy, and ready to forget his sufferings 
in his joy at the thought that the sum of human sorrows would 
be diminished by Pasteur's victory. He went to the Academie 


de Medecine the next day to enjoy the echo of the great sitting 
of the Academic des Sciences. He died on November 2th 

The chairman of the Acad- my of Medicine, M. Juki 
Bergeron, applauded Pasteur's statement all the more that he 
too had publicly deplored (in 1862) the impotence of medical 
science in the presence of this cruel disease. 

But while M. Bergeron shared the admiration felt by Vulpian 
and Dr. Grancher for the experiments which had transformed 
the rabic virus into its own vaccine, other medical men were 
divided into several categories : some were full of enthusiasm, 
others reserved their opinion, many were sceptical, and a few 
even positively hostile. 

As soon as Pasteur's paper was published, people bitten by 
rabid dogs began to arrive from all sides to the laboratory. The 
"service" of hydrophobia became the chief business of the 
day. Every morning was spent by Eugene Viala in preparing 
the fragments of marrow used for inoculations : in a little room 
permanently kept at a temperature of 20° to 23° C, stood rows 
of sterilized flasks, their tubular openings closed by plugs of 
cotton-wool. Each flask contained a rabic marrow, hanging 
from the stopper by a thread and gradually drying up by the 
action of some fragments of caustic potash lying at the bottom 
of the flask. Viala cut those marrows into small pieces by 
means of scissors previously put through a flame, and placed 
them in small sterilized glasses; he then added a feu drops of 
veal broth and pounded the mixture with a glass rod. The 
vaccinal liquid was now ready; each glass was covered with 
a paper cover, and bore the date of the medulla used, the 
earliest of which was fourteen days old. For each pat: 
under treatment from a certain date, there was a whole 
series of little glasses. Pasteur always attended these opera- 
tions personally. 

In the large hall of the laboratory, Pasteur's collaborators, 
Messrs. Chamberland and Roux, carried on investigations into 
contagious diseases under the master's directions ; the place was 
full of flasks, pipete, phials, containing culture broths. Etienne 
Wasserzug, another curator, hardly more than a hoy. (resfa 
from the Ecole Normale, where his bright intelligence and 
affectionate heart had made him very popular, translated (for 
he knew the English, German, Italian, Hungarian and Spanish 
languages, and was awaiting a favourable opportunity of learn- 
ing Russian) the letters which arrived from all parts of the 

1885—1888 203 

world ; he also entertained foreign scientists. Pasteur had in 
him a most valuable interpreter. Physicians came from all 
parts of the world asking to be allowed to study the details of 
the method. One morning, Dr. Grancher found Pasteur listen- 
ing to a physician who was gravely and solemnly holding forth 
his objections to microbian doctrines., and in particular to the 
treatment of hydrophobia. Pasteur having heard this long 
monologue, rose and said, "Sir, your language is not very 
intelligible to me. I am not a physician and do not desire to 
be one. Never speak to me of your dogma of morbid spon- 
taneity. I am a chemist ; I carry oat experiments and I try 
to understand what they teach me. What do you think, 
doctor? ,: he added, turning to M. Grancher. The latter 
smilingly answered that the hour for inoculations had struck. 
They took place at eleven, in Pasteur's study ; he, standing by 
the open door, called out the names of the patients. The date 
and circumstances of the bites and the veterinary surgeon's 
certificate were entered in a register, and the patients were 
divided into series according to the degree of virulence which 
was to be inoculated on each day of the period of treatment. 

Pasteur took a personal interest in each of his patients, help- 
ing those who were poor and illiterate to find suitable lodgings 
in the great capital. Children especially inspired him with a 
loving solicitude. But his pity was mingled with terror, when, 
on November 9, a little girl of ten was brought to him who had 
been severely bitten on the head by a mountain dog, on October 
3, thirty-seven days before ! ! The wound was still suppurating. 
He said to himself, " This is a hopeless case : hydrophobia is 
no doubt about to appear immediately ; it is much too late 
for the preventive treatment to have the least chance of success. 
Should I not, in the scientific interest of the method, refuse to 
treat this child? If the issue is fatal, all those who have already 
been treated will be frightened, and many bitten persons, dis- 
couraged from coming to the laboratory, may succumb to the 
disease ! ' These thoughts rapidly crossed Pasteur's mind. 
But he found himself unable to resist his compassion for the 
father and mother, begging him to try and save their child. 

After the treatment was over, Louise Pelletier had returned 
to school, when fits of breathlessness appeared, soon followed 
by convulsive spasms; she could swallow nothing. Pasteur 
hastened to her side when these symptoms began, and new 
inoculations were attempted. On December 2, there was a 


respite of a few hours, moments of calm which inspired Pasteur 
with the vain hope that she might yet he saved. This delusion 

9 a short -lived one. After attending Bouley's funeral, his 
rt full of sorrow, Pasteur spent the day by little Louis 
bedside, in her parents' rooms in the line Dauphine. lb- 
could not tear himself away: Bhe herself, full of affection for 
hin desire that he should not go away, that he 

should stay with her! She felt for his hand between two 

Bins. Pasteur shared the grief of the father and moth 
When all hope had to be abandoned : " I did so wish 1 could 
have saved your little one ! " he said. And as he came down 
the staircase, he burst into tears. 

He was obliged, a few days later, to preside at the reception 
of Joseph Bertrand at the Acadcmie Francaise ; his sad feelings 
little in harmony with the occasion. He read in a mournful 
and troubled voice the speech he had prepared during his 
peaceful and happy holidays at Arbois. Henry Houssaye, 
reporting on this ceremony in the Journal des Debats, wr 
" M. Pasteur ended his speech amidst a torrent of applai; 
he received a veritable ovation. He seemed unaccountably 
moved. How can M. Pasteur, who has received every mark 
of admiration, every supreme honour, whose name is conse- 
crated by universal renown, still be touched by anything save 
the discoveries of his powerful genius? " People did not realize 
that Pasteur's thoughts were far away from himself and from 
his brilliant discovery. He was thinking of Dumas, his mast.r, 
of Bouley, his faithful friend and colleague, and of the child 
he had been unable to snatch from the jaws of death ; his mind 
was not with the living, but with the dead. 

A telegram from New York having announced that four 
children, bitten by rabid dogs, were starting for Paris, many 
adversaries who had heard of Louise Pelletier's death were say- 
ing triumphantly that, if those children's parents had known 
of her fate they would have spared t! i long and us- 


The four little Americans belonged to workmen's families 
and were sent to Paris by means of a public subscription opei 
in the columns of the NeiC York Herald ; they were accornpa: 
by a doctor and by the mother of the youngest of them, a boy 
only t :ts old. After the first inoculation, this little boy, 

astonished at the insignificant prick, could not help saying, 
"Is this all we have come such a long journey for The 

1885—1888 205 

children were received with enthusiasm on their return to New 
York, and were asked "many questions about the great man 
who had taken such care of them." 

A letter dated from that time (January 14, 1886) shows that 
Pasteur yet found time for kindness, in the midst of his world- 
famed occupations. 

" My dear Jupille, I have received your letters, and I am 
much pleased with the news you give me of your health. Mme. 
Pasteur thanks you for remembering her. She, and every one 
at the laboratory, join with me in wishing that you may keep 
well and improve as much as possible in reading, writing and 
arithmetic. Your writing is already much better than it was, 
but you should take some pains with your spelling. Where do 
you go to school ? Who teaches you ? Do you work at home 
as much as you might? You know that Joseph Meister, who 
was first to be vaccinated, often writes to me ; well, I think he 
is improving more quickly than you are, though he is only ten 
years old. So, mind you take pains, do not waste your time 
with other boys, and listen to the advice of your teachers, and 
of your father and mother. Eemember me to M. Perrot, the 
Mayor of Villers-Farlay. Perhaps, without him, you would 
have become ill, and to be ill of hydrophobia means inevitable 
death ; therefore you owe him much gratitude. Good-bye. 
Keep well." 

Pasteur's solicitude did not confine itself to his two first 
patients, Joseph Meister and the fearless Jupille, but was 
extended to all those who had come under his care ; his kind- 
ness was like a living flame. The very little ones who then 
only saw in him a "kind gentleman' bending over them 
understood later in life, when recalling the sweet smile lighting 
up his serious face, that Science, thus understood, unites moral 
with intellectual grandeur. 

Good, like evil, is infectious; Pasteur's science and devotion 
inspired an act of generosity which was to be followed by many 
others. He received a visit from one of his colleagues at the 
Academie Francaise, Edouard Herve, who looked upon journal- 
ism as a great responsibility and as a school of mutual re- 
spect between adversaries. He was bringing to Pasteur, from 
the Comte de Laubespin, a generous philanthropist, a sum of 
40,000 fr. destined to meet the expenses necessitated by the 
organization of the hydrophobia treatment. Pasteur, when 


questioned by Hcrvc\ answered that his intention was to found 
a model establishment in Paris, supp<»rt< d by donations and 
international subscriptions, without having recourse to the 
State. But he added that be wanted to wait a little longer 
until the success of the treatmenl was undoubted. Statistics 
came to support it; Bouley, who had been entrusted with an 
official inquiry on the subject under the Empire, had found 
that the proportion of deaths after bites from rabid dogs had 
been 40 per 100, 320 cases having been watched. The propor- 
tion" often was greater still : whilst Joseph Meister was under 
Pasteur's care, five persons were bitten by a rabid dog on the 
Pantin Road, near Paris, and every one of them succumbed to 

Pasteur, instead of referring to Bouley 's statistics, preferred 
to adopt those of M. Leblanc, a veterinary surgeon and a 
member of the Academy of Medicine, who had for a long time 
been head of the sanitary department of the Prefecture <le Poll 
These statistics only gave a proportion of deaths of 16 per 100, 
and had been carefully and accurately kept. 

On March 1, he was able to afhrm, before the Acad« I 
that the new method had given proofs of its merit, for, out 
350 persons treated, only one death had taken place, that of the 
little Pelletier. He concluded thus— 

"It may be seen, by comparison with the most rigorous 
statistics, that a very large number of persons have already been 
saved from death. 

" The prophylaxis of hydrophobia after a bite is establish 

" It is advisable to create a vaccinal institute against 

The Academy of Sciences appointed a Commission who 
unanimously adopted the suggestion that an establishment for 
the preventive treatment of hydrophobia alter a hit.' should be 
created in Paris, under the name of Institut Pasteur. A sub- 
scription was about to be opened in Fiance and abroad. The 
spending of the funds would be directed by a Bpecial Commit: 

A great wave of enthusiasm and generosity swept from one 
end of France to another and reached foreign countries. A 
newspaper of Milan, the Perseveranza, which had opened a 
subscription, collected 6,000 fr. in its first list. The Journal 
d'Alsao headed H propaganda in favour of this work. " sprung 
from Science and Charity." It reminded its readers that 
Pasteur had occupied a professor's chair in the former brilliant 

1885—1888 207 

Faculty of Science of Strasburg, and that his first inocula- 
tion was made on an Alsatian boy, Joseph Meister. The 
newspaper intended to send the subscriptions to Pasteur 
with these words : " Offerings from Alsace-Lorraine to the 
Pasteur Institute." 

The war of 1870 still darkened the memories of nations. 
Amongst eager and numerous inventions of instruments of 
death and destruction, humanity breathed when fresh news 
came from the laboratory, where a continued struggle was 
taking place against diseases. The most mysterious, the most 
cruel of all was going to be reduced to impotence. 

Yet the method was about to meet with a few more cases like 
Louise Pelletier's ; accidents would result, either from delay or 
from exceptionally serious wounds. Happy days were still in 
store for those who sowed doubt and hatred. 

During the early part of March, Pasteur received nineteen 
Russians, coming from the province of Smolensk. They had 
been attacked by a rabid wolf and most of them had terrible 
wounds : one of them, a priest, had been surprised by the 
infuriated beast as he was going into church, his upper lip and 
right cheek had been torn off, his face was one gaping wound. 
Another, the youngest of them, had had the skin of his forehead 
torn off by the wolf's teeth ; other bites were like knife cuts. 
Five of these unhappy wretches were in such a condition that 
they had to be carried to the Hotel Dieu Hospital as soon as they 

The Eussian doctor who had accompanied these mujiks 
related how the wolf had wandered for two days and two 
nights, tearing to pieces every one he met, and how he had 
finally been struck down with an axe by one of those he had 
bitten most severely. 

Because of the gravity of the wounds, and in order to make 
up for the time lost by the Russians before they started, Pasteur 
decided on making two inoculations every day, one in the morn- 
ing and one in the evening ; the patients at the Hotel Dieu 
could be inoculated upon at the hospital. 

The fourteen others came every morning in their toaloupes 
and fur caps, with their wounds bandaged, and joined without a 
word the motley groups awaiting treatment at the laboratory — 
an English family, a Basque peasant, a Hungarian in hia 
national costume, etc., etc. 


In the evening, the dumb and resigned band of mujiks came 
in to the laboratory door. They seemed led by Fate, b 
1< ss of the struggle between life and death of which they were 
the prize. " Pasteur " was the only French word they kn< 
and their set and melancholy faces brightened in his presence 
as with a ray of hope and gratitude. 

Their condition was the more alarming that a whole fort- 
night had elapsed between their being bitten and the date of 
the first inoculations. Statistics were terrifying as to the results 
of wolf-bites, the average proportion of deaths being 82 per 100. 
Genera] anxiety and excitement prevailed concerning the hap- 
less Russians, and the news of the death of three of them 
produced an intense emotion. 

Pasteur had unceasingly continued his visits to the Hotel 
Dieu. He was overwhelmed with grief. His confidence in his 
method was in no wise shaken, the general results would not 
allow it. But questions of statistics were of little account in 
his eyes when he was the witness of a misfortune ; his charity 
was not of that kind which is exhausted by collective generali- 
ties : each individual appealed to his heart. As he passed 
through the wards at the Hotel Dieu, each patient in his bed 
inspired him with deep compassion. And that is why so many 
who only saw him pass, heard his voice, met his pitiful « 
resting on them, have preserved of him a memory such as the 
poor had of St. Vincent de Paul. 

" The other Russians are keeping well so far." declared 
Pasteur at the Academy sitting of April 12, 188G. Whilst 
lain opponents in France continued to discuss the three 
deaths and apparently saw nought but those failures, the ret 
of the sixteen survivors was greeted with an almost relig; 
emotion. Other Russians had come before them and v% 
saved, and the Tsar, knowing these thin. sired his brother, 

the Grand Duke Vladimir, to bring to Pasteur an imperial gift, 
the Cross of the Order of St. Anne of Russia, in diamonds. 
He did more, he gave 100,000 fr. in aid of the proposed 1 

In April, IfiSG, the English Government, Beeing the pi icticsJ 
ults of the method for the prophylaxis of hydrophobia, 
appointed a Commission to study and verify the facts, 
.lames Paget was the president of it, and the other meml 
were : — Dr. Laudi r-Brunton, Mr. Fleming, Sir Joseph Lister, 
Dr. Quain. Sir Henry Roscoe, Professor Burdon Sanderson, and 

1885—1888 209 

Mr. Victor Horsley, secretary. The resume of the programme 
was as follows — 

Development of the rabic virus in the medulla oblongata of 
animals dying of rabies. 

Transmission of this virus by subdural or subcutaneous 

Intensification of this virus by successive passages from 
rabbit to rabbit. 

Possibility either of protectig healthy animals from ulterior 
bites from rabid animals, or of preventing the onset of rabies in 
animals already bitten, by means of vaccinal inoculations. 

Applications of this method to man and value of its results. 

Burdon Sanderson and Horsley came to Paris, and two 
rabbits, inoculated on by Pasteur, were taken to England; a 
series of experiments was to be begun on them, and an inquiry 
was to take place afterwards concerning patients treated both 
in France and in England. Pasteur, who lost his temper at 
prejudices and ill-timed levity, approved and solicited inquiry 
and careful examination. 

Long lists of subscribers appeared in the Journal Officiel — 
millionaires, poor workmen, students, women, etc. A great 
festival was organized at the Trocadero in favour of the Pasteur 
Institute ; the greatest artistes offered their services. Coquelin 
recited verses written for the occasion which excited loud 
applause from the immense audience. Gounod, who had con- 
ducted his Ave Maria, turned round after the closing bars, and, 
in an impulse of heartfelt enthusiasm, kissed both his hands to 
the savant. 

In the evening at a banquet, Pasteur thanked his colleagues 
and the organizers of this incomparable performance. " Was 
it not," he said, "a touching sight, that of those immortal 
composers, those great charmers of fortunate humanity coming 
to the assistance of those who wish to study and to serve suffer- 
ing humanity? And you too come, great artistes, great actors, 
like so many generals re-entering the ranks to give greater 
vigour to a common feeling. I cannot easily describe what I 
felt. Dare I confess that I was hearing most of you for the 
first time? I do not think I have spent more than ten evenings 
of my whole life at a theatre. But I can have no regrets now 
that you have given me, in a few hours' interval, as in an 
exquisite synthesis, the feelings that so many others scatter over 
several months, or rather several years." 



A few days later, the subscription from Alsace-Lorraine 
brought in 13,000 fr. Pasteur received it with grateful emotion, 

and was pleased and touched to find the name of little Joseph 
Meister among the list of private subscribers. It was now 
eleven months since he had been bitten so cruelly by the dog. 
whose rabic condition had immediately beeo recognized by the 
German authorities. Pasteoi ever kept a corner of his heart 
for the boy who had caused him such anxiety. 

Pasteur's name was now familiar to all those who were try- 
ing to benefit humanity; his presence at charitable gatherings 
was considered as a happy omen, and he was asked to pre- 
on many such occasions. He was ever ready with his help and 
sympathy, speaking in public, answering letters from prh 
individuals, giving wholesome advice to young people who came 
to him for it, and doing nothing by halves. If he found I 
time, even during that period when the study of rabies v 
absorbing him, to undertake so many things and to achieve so 
many tasks, he owed it to Mine. Pasteur, who watched <" 
his peace, keeping him safe from intrusions and interruptions. 
This retired, almost recluse life, enabled him to compl any 

works, a few of which would have sufficed to make several 
scientists celebrated. 

Every morning, between ten and eleven o'clod: 
walked down the Rue Claude-Bernard to the Rue Vauquelin, 
where a few temporary buildings had been erected to facilil 
the treatment of hydrophobia, close to the rabbit hutches, hen- 
coops, and dog kennels which occupied the yard of the old 
College Rollin. The patients under treatment walked ab 
cheerfully amidst these surroundings, looking like holiday 
makers in a Zoological Garden. Children, whose tears were 
already dried at the second inoculation, ran about merrily. 
Pasteur, who loved the little ones, always kept BWeets or new 
copper coins for them in his drawer. One little girl amused 
h< rself by having holes bored in those coins, and hung them 
round her neck like B necklace ; she was wearing this ornament 
on the day of her departure, when she ran to kiss the great man 
as she would have kissed her grandfather. 

Drs. Grancher, Roux, Chantemesse. and Charrin came by 
turns to perform the inoculations. A surgery ward had be 
installed to treat the numerous wounds of the patients, and 
entrusted to the young and energetic Dr. Terrillon. 

1885—1888 211 

In August, 1886, while staying at Arbois, Pasteur spent 
much time over his notes and registers ; he was sometimes 
tempted to read over certain articles of passionate criticism. 
" How difficult it is to obtain the triumph of truth ! " he would 
say. ' Opposition is a useful stimulant, but bad faith is such , 
a pitiable thing. How is it that they are not struck with the 
results as shown by statistics? From 1880 to 1885, sixty 
persons are stated to have died of hydrophobia in the 
Paris hospitals; well, since November 1, 1885, when the 
prophylactic method was started in my laboratory, only three 
deaths have occurred in those hospitals, two of which were cases 
which had not been treated. It is evident that very few people 
who had been bitten did not come to be treated. In France, 
out of that unknown but very restricted number, seventeen 
cases of death have been noted, whilst out of the 1,726 French 
and Algerians who came to the laboratory only ten died after 
the treatment." 

But Pasteur was not yet satisfied with this proportion, already 
so low ; he was trying to forestall the outburst of hydrophobia 
by a greater rapidity and intensity of the treatment. He read 
a paper on the subject to the Academy of Sciences on November 
2, 1886. Admiral Jurien de la Graviere, who was in the chair, 
said to him, " All great discoveries have gone through a time of 
trial. May your health withstand the troubles and difficulties 
in your way." 

Pasteur's health had indeed suffered from so much work and 
anxiety, and there were symptoms of some heart trouble. Drs. 
Villemin and Grancher persuaded him to interrupt his work and 
to think of spending a restful winter in the south of France. 
M. Raphael Bischoff sheim , a great lover of science, placed at 
Pasteur's disposal his beautiful villa at Bordighera, close to the 
French frontier, which he had on divers occasions lent to other 
distinguished guests, the Queen of Italy, Henri Sainte-Claire 
Deville, Gambetta, etc. 

Pasteur consented to leave his work at the end of November, 
and started one evening from the Gare de Lyon with his wife, 
his daughter and her husband, and his two grandchildren; 
eighteen friends came to the station to see him off, including 
his pupils, M. Bischoff sheim , and some foreign physicians who 
were staying in Paris to study the prophylactic treatment of 

The bright dawn and the sunshine already appearing at 

F F 


Avignon contrasted with the foggy November weather left 
behind in Paris and brought a feeling of comfort, almost of 
returning health ; a delegation of doctors met the train at Nice, 
bringing Pasteur their good wishes. 

The travelling party drove from Vintimille to Bordighera 
under the deep blue sky reflected in a 6ea of a yet deeper blue, 
along a road bordered with cacti, palms and other tropical plants. 
The sight of the lovely gardens of the Villa Bischoffsheim gave 
Pasteur a delicious feeling of rest. 

His health soon improved sufficiently for him to be able to 
take some short walks. But his thoughts constantly recurred 
to the laboratory. M. Duclaux was then thinking of starting a 
monthly periodical entitled Annals of the Pasteur Institute. 
Pasteur, writing to him on December 27, 1887, to express his 
approbation, suggested various experiments to be attempted. 
He attributed the action of the preventive inoculations to a 
vaccinal matter associated with the rabic microbe. Pasteur had 
thought at first that the first development of the pathogenic 
microbe caused the disappearance from the organism of an 
element necessary to the life of that microbe. It was, in other 
words, a theory of exhaustion. But since 1S85, he adopted the 
other idea, supported indeed by biologists, that immunity \ 
due to a substance left in the body by the culture of the microbe 
and which opposed the invasion — a theory of addition. 

" I am happy to learn," wrote Villemin, his friend and his 
medical adviser, "that your health is improving; continue to 
rest in that beautiful country, you have well deserved it, and 
rest is absolutely necessary to you. You have overtaxed your.- 
beyond all reason and you must make up for it. Repairs to 
the nervous system are worked chiefly by relaxation from the 
mental storms and moral anxietii a which your rabid work has 
occasioned in you. Give the Bordighera sun a chance ! ' ' 

I'.ut Pasteur was not allowed the reel he so much needed ; on 
January 4, 1887, referring to a death which had occurred after 
treatment in the preceding December. M. Peter declared that 
the antirabic cure was Qseless; at the following meeting be 
railed it dangerous when applied in the "intensive' form. 
Dujardin-Beaumetz, Chauveau and Verneui] immediately inter- 
vened, declaring that the alleged fact was " devoid of any scien- 
tific character." A week later. MM. Grancher and BrouardV 1 
bore the brunt of the discussion. Grancher. Pasteur's repre- 
sentative on this occasion, disproved certain allegations, and 

1885—1888 213 

added : " The medical men who have been chosen by M. 
Pasteur to assist him in his work have not hesitated to practise 
the antirabic inoculation on themselves, as a safeguard against 
an accidental inoculation of the virus which they are constantly 
handling. What greater proof can they give of their bona fide 
convictions ? " He showed that the mortality amongst the 
cases treated remained below 1 per 100. " M. Pasteur will 
soon publish foreign statistics from Samara, Moscow, St. 
Petersburg, Odessa, Warsaw and Vienna : they are all abso- 
lutely favourable." 

As it was insinuated that the laboratory of the Ecole Kormale 
kept its failures a secret, it was decided that the Annals of the 
Pasteur Institute would publish a monthly list and bulletin of 
patients under treatment. 

Vulpian, at another meeting (it was almost the last time he 
was heard at the Academie de Medecine), said, a propos of what 
he called an inexcusable opposition, " This new benefit adds 
to the number of those which our illustrious Pasteur has already- 
rendered to humanity. . . . Our works and our names will soon 
be buried under the rising tide of oblivion : the name and the 
works of M. Pasteur will continue to stand on heights too great 
to be reached by its sullen waves." Pasteur was much dis- 
turbed by the noise of these discussions ; every post increased his 
feverishness, and he spoke every morning of returning to Paris 
to answer his opponents. 

It was a pitiful thing to note on his worn countenance the 
visible signs of the necessity of the peace and rest offered by 
this beautiful land of serene sunshine ; and to hear at the same 
time a constant echo of those angry debates. Anonymous 
letters were sent to him, insulting newspaper articles — all that 
envy and hatred can invent ; the seamy side of human nature 
was being revealed to him. " I did not know I had so many 
enemies," he said mournfully. He was consoled to some extent 
by the ardent support of the greatest medical men in France. 

Vulpian, in a statement to the Academie des Sciences, con- 
stituted himself Pasteur's champion. Pasteur indeed was saf< 
from attacks in that centre, but certain low slanderers who 
attended the public meetings of the Academie continued to 
accuse Pasteur of concealing the failures of his method. Vulpian 
— who was furiously angry at such an insinuation against ' ' a 
man like M. Pasteur, whose good faith, loyalty and scientific 
integrity should be an example to his adversaries as they are to 

F f 2 


his friends" — thought that it was in the interest both of 
Bcience and of humanity to state once more the facts recently 
confirmed by new statistics ; the public is so impressionable and 
so mobile in its opinions that one article is often enough to sh 
general confidence. He was therefore anxious to reassure all 
those who had been inoculated on and who might be induced 
by those discussions to wonder with anguish whether they 
really were saved. The Academy of Sciences decided that 
Vulpian's statement should be inserted in cxtenso in all the 
reports and a copy of it sent to every village in France. 
Vulpian wrote to Pasteur at the same time, " All your admirers 
hope that those interested attacks will merely excite your con- 
tempt. Fine weather is no doubt reigning at Bordighera : you 
must take advantage of it and become quite well. . . . The 
Academy of Medicine is almost entirely on your side ; there are 
at the most but four or five exceptions." 

Pasteur had a few calm days after these debates. Whilst 
planning out new investigations, he was much interested in the 
plans for his Institute which were now submitted to him. I 
thoughts were always away from Bordighera. which he seemed 
to look upon as a sort of exile. This impression was partly due 
to the situation of the town, so close to the frontier, and I 
haunt of 60 many homeless wanderers. He once met a sad- 
faced, still beautiful woman, in mourning robes, and recognized 
the Empress Eugenie. 

Shortly afterwards, he received a visit from Prince Napoleon, 
who dragged his haughty ennui from town to town. He j 
sented himself at the Villa BischofFsheim under the name of 
Count Moncalieri, coming, he said, to greet his colleague of the 
Institute. Rabies formed the subject of their conversation. 
The next day, Pasteur called on the Prince, in his common- 
place hotel rooms, a mere temporary resting place for the exiled 
Bonaparte, whose mysterious, uncompleted destiny was made 
more enigmatical by his startling resemblance to the gr 

On February 23, the day after the carnival, early in the 
morning, a violent earthquake east terror over tl oeful land 

where nature hides with flowers the Bpectreof death. At G 
a.m. a low and distant rambling sound was heard, coming from 
the depths of the earth and resembling the noise of a train pass- 
ing in an underground tunnel ; houses began to rock and 

1885—1888 215 

ominous cracks were heard. This first shock lasted more than 
a minute, during which the sense of solidity disappeared alto- 
gether, to be succeeded by a feeling of absolute, hopeless, impo- 
tence. No doubt, in every household, families gathered 
together, with a sudden yearning not to be divided. Pasteur's 
wife, children and grandchildren had barely had time to come 
to him when another shock took place, more terrible than the 
first ; everything seemed about to be engulfed in an abyss. 
Never had morning been more radiant ; there was not a breath 
of wind, the air was absolutely transparent. 

An early departure was necessary : the broken ceilings were 
dropping to pieces, shaken off by an incessant vibration of the 
ground which continued after the second shock, and of which 
Pasteur observed the effect on glass windows with much interest. 
Pasteur and his family dove off to Vintimille in a carriage, along 
a road lined with ruined houses, crowded with sick people in 
quest of carriages and peasants coming down from their moun- 
tain dwellings, destroyed by the shock, leading donkeys loaded 
with bedding, the women followed by little children hastily 
wrapt in blankets and odd clothes. At Vintimille station, 
terrified travellers were trying to leave France for Italy or 
Italy for France, fancying that the danger would cease on the 
other side of the frontier. 

' We have resolved to go to Arbois," wrote Mme. Pasteur 
to her son from Marseilles; "your father will be better able 
there than anywhere else to recover from this shock to his 

After a few weeks' stay at Arbois, Pasteur seemed quite 
well again. He was received with respect and veneration on his 
return to the Academies of Sciences and of Medicine. His best 
and greatest colleagues had realized what the loss of him would 
mean to France and to the world, and surrounded him with an 
anxious solicitude. 

At the beginning of July, Pasteur received the report pre- 
sented to the House of Commons by the English Commission 
after a fourteen months' study of the prophylactic method 
against hydrophobia. The English scientists had verified every 
one of the facts upon which the method was founded, but they 
had not been satisfied with their experimental researches in Mr. 
Horsley's laboratory, and had carried out a long and minute 
inquiry in France. After noting on Pasteur's registers the 
names of ninety persons treated, who had come from the same 


neighbourhood, they had interviewed each one of them in their 
own homes. "It nmy therefore be considered as certain" — 
thus ran the report — "that M. Pasteur has discovered a 
prophylactic method against hydrophobia which may be com- 
pared with that of vaccination against small-pox. It would be 
difficult to overestimate the utility of this discovery, both from 
the point of view of its practical side and of its application to 
general pathology. We have here a new method of inoculation, 
or vaccination, as M. Pasteur sometimes calls it, and similar 
means might be employed to protect man and domestic anin 
against other virus as active as that of hydrophobia." 

Pasteur laid this report on the desk of the Academy of 
Sciences on July 4. He spoke of its spirit of entire and 
unanimous confidence, and added — 

"Thus fall to the ground the contradictions which have been 
published. I leave on one side the passionate attacks which 
were not justified by the least attempt at experiment, the 
slightest observation of facts in my laboratory, or even an 
exchange of words and ideas with the Director of the Hydro- 
phobia Clinic, Professor Grancher, and his medical assistants. 

"But, however deep is my satisfaction as a Frenchman, I 
cannot but feel a sense of deepest sadness at the thought that 
this high testimony from a commission of illustrious scient: 
was not known by him who, at the very beginning of the 
application of this method, supported me by his counsels and 
his authority, and who later on, when I was ill and absent, 
knew so well how to champion truth and justice ; I mean our 
beloved colleague Vulpian." 

Vulpian had succumbed to a few days' illness. II is >p 
in favour of Pasteur was almost the farewell to the Academy 
of this great-hearted scientist. 

The discussion threatened to revive. Other colleagues 
defended Pasteur at the Academy of Medicine on July U. 
Professor Brouardel spoke, also M. Villemin, and then Charcot, 
who insisted on quoting word for word Vulpian's true and 
simple phrase : "The discovery of the preventive treatment of 
hydrophobia after a bite, entirely due to M. Pasteur's experi- 
mental genius, is one of the finest discoveries ever made, both 
from the scientific and the humanitarian point of view." A 
Charcot continued : "I am persuaded that I express in th< 
words the opinion of all the medical men who have stud 
the question with an open mind, free from prejudice; the 

1885—1888 217 

inventor of antirabic vaccination may, now more than ever, 
hold his head high and continue to accomplish his glorious task, 
heedless of the clamour of systematic contradiction or of the 
insidious murmurs of slander." 

The Academy of Sciences begged Pasteur to become its 
Life Secretary in Vulpian's place. Pasteur did not reply at 
once to this offer, but went to see M. Berthelot : " This high 
position," he said, " would be more suitable to you than to 
me." M. Berthelot, much touched, refused unconditionally, 
and Pasteur accepted. He was elected on July 18. He said, 
in thanking his colleagues, "I would now spend what time 
remains before me, on the one hand in encouraging to research 
and in training for scientific studies, — the future of which seems 
to me most promising, — pupils worthy of French science ; and, 
on the other hand, in following attentively the work incited 
and encouraged by this Academy. 

4 Our only consolation, as we feel our own strength failing 
us, is to feel that we may help those who come after us to do 
more and to do better than ourselves, fixing their eyes as they 
can on the great horizons of which we only had a glimpse." 

He did not long fulfil his new duties. On October 23, Sun- 
day morning, after writing a letter in his room, he tried to speak 
to Mme. Pasteur and could not pronounce a word; his tongue 
was paralyzed. He had promised to lunch with his daughter 
on that day, and, fearing that she might be alarmed, he drove 
to her house. After spending a few hours in an easy chair, he 
consented to remain at her house with Mme. Pasteur. In 
the evening his speech returned, and two days later, when he 
went back to the Ecole Normale, no one would have noticed 
any change in him. But, on the following Saturday morning, 
he had another almost similar attack, without any premonitory 
symptoms. His speech remained somewhat difficult, and his 
deep powerful voice completely lost its strength. In January, 
1888, he was obliged to resign his secretaryship. 

Ill-health had emaciated his features. A portrait of him by 
Carolus Duran represents him looking ill and weary, a sad look 
in his eyes. But goodness predominates in those worn features, 
revealing that lovable soul, full of pity for all human sufferings,* 
and of which the painter has rendered the unspeakable thrill. 

Pasteur's various portraits, compared with one another, show 
us different aspects of his physiognomy. A luminous profile, 
painted by Henner ten years before, brings out the powerful 


harmony of the forehead. In 1886, Bonnat painted, for the 
brewer Jacobsen, who wished to present it to Mme. Pasteur, a 
large portrait which may be called an official one. Pasteur is 
standing in rather an artificial attitude, which might be 
imperious, if his left hand was not resting on the shoulder of 
his granddaughter, a child of six. with clear pensive eyes. In 
that same year, Edelfeldt, the Finnish painter, begged to be 
allowed to come into the laboratory for a few sketches. Pasteur 
came and went, attending to his work and taking no notice of 
the painter. One day that Edelfeldt was watching him thus, 
deep in observation, his forehead lined with almost painful 
thoughts, he undertook to portray the savant in his meditative 
attitude. Pasteur is standing clad in a short brown coat, an 
experimental card in his left hand, in his right, a phial contain- 
ing a fragment of rabic marrow, the expression in his eyes 
entirely concentrated on the scientific problem. 

During the year 1888, Pasteur, after spending the morning 
with his patients, used to go and watch the buildings for the 
Pasteur Institute which were being erected in the Rue Dutot. 
11,000 square yards of ground had been acquired in the midst 
of some market gardens. Instead of rows of hand-lights and 
young lettuces, a stone building, with a Louis XIII facade, wag 
now being constructed. An interior gallery connected the main 
building with the large wings. The Pasteur Institute was to be 
at the same time a great dispensary for the treatment of hydro- 
phobia, a centre of research on virulent and contagious diseases, 
and also a teaching centre. M. Duclaux's class of biological 
chemistry, held at the Sorbonne, was about to be transferred to 
the Pasteur Institute, where Dr. Roux would also give a course 
of lectures on technical microbia. The " service " of vaccina- 
tions against anthrax was entrusted to M. Chamberland. (The 
statistics of 1882-1887 gave a total of 1,600,000 sheep and nearly 
200,000 oxen.) There would also be, under M. Metchmkoff's 
direction, some private laboratories, the monkish cells of the 

At the end of October, the work was almost completed ; 
Pasteur invited the President of the Republic to come and 
inaugurate the Institute. " I shall certainly not fail to do so," 
answered Carnot ; " your Institute is a credit to France." 

On November 14, politicians, colleagues, friends, collabora- 
tors, pupils assembled in the large library of the new Institute. 
Pasteur had the pleasure of seeing before him, in the first rank, 

1885—1888 219 

Duruy and Jules Simon ; it was a great day for these former 
Ministers of Public Instruction. Like them, Pasteur had all 
his life been deeply interested in higher education. " If that 
teaching is but for a small number," he said, "it is with this 
small number, this elite that the prosperity, glory and 
supremacy of a nation rest." 

Joseph Bertrand, chairman of the Institute Committee, know- 
ing that by so doing he responded to Pasteur's dearest wishes, 
spoke of the past and recalled the memories of Biot, Senarmont, 
Claude Bernard, Balard, and J. B. Dumas. 

Professor Grancher, Secretary of the Committee, alluded to 
the way in which not only Vulpian but Brouardel, Charcot, 
Verneuil, Chauveau and Villemin had recently honoured them- 
selves by supporting the cause of progress and preparing its 
triumph. These memories of early friends, associated with that 
of recent champions, brought before the audience a vision of 
the procession of years. After speaking of the obstacles Pasteur 
had so often encountered amongst the medical world — 

"You know," said M. Grancher, "that M. Pasteur is an 
innovator, and that his creative imagination, kept in check by 
rigorous observation of facts, has overturned many errors and 
built up in their place an entirely new science. His discoveries 
on ferments, on the generation of the infinitesimally small, on 
microbes, the cause of contagious diseases, and on the vaccina- 
tion of those diseases, have been for biological chemistry, for 
the veterinary art and for medicine, not a regular progress, but 
a complete revolution. Now, revolutions, even those imposed 
by scientific demonstration, ever leave behind them vanquished 
ones who do not easily forgive. M. Pasteur has therefore many 
adversaries in the world, without counting those Athenian 
French who do not like to see one man always right or always 
fortunate. And, as if he had not enough adversaries, M. 
Pasteur makes himself new ones by the rigorous implacability 
of his dialectics and the absolute form he sometimes gives to his 

Going on to the most recently acquired results, M. Grancher 
stated that the mortality amongst persons treated after bites 
from rabid dogs remained under 1 per 100. 

'If those figures are indeed eloquent," said M. Christophle, 
the treasurer, who spoke after M. Grancher, "other figures 
are touching. I would advise those who only see the dark side 
of humanity," he remarked, before entering upon the statement 


of accounts — "those who go about repeating that everything 
here below is for the worst, that there is no disin* <lness, 

no devotion in this world — to cast their eyes over the ' human 
documents ' of the Pasteur Institute. They would learn therein, 
beginning at the beginning, that Academies contain colleagues 
who are not offended, but proud and happy in the fame of 
another ; that politicians and journalists often have a passion 
for what is good and true ; that at no former epoch have gr 
men been more beloved in France ; that justice is already ren- 
dered to them during their lifetime, which is very much the 
best way of doing so ; that we have cheered Victor Hugo's 
birthday, Chevreul's centenary, and the inauguration of I 
Pasteur Institute. When a Frenchman runs himself down, 
said one of M. Pasteur's colleagues, do not believe him ; he is 
boasting! Reversing a celebrated and pessimistic phrase, it 
might be said that in this public subscription all the virtues 
flow into unselfishness like rivers into the sea." 

M. Christophle went on to show how rich and poor had joined 
in this subscription and raised an amount of 2,586,680 fr. The 
French Chambers had voted 200,000 fr., to which had b 
added international gifts from the Tsar, the Emperor of Brazil, 
and the Sultan. The total expenses would probably reach 
1,563,786 fr., leaving a little more than a million to form an 
endowment for the Pasteur Institute, a fund which was to be 
increased every year by the product of the sale of vaccines from 
the laboratory, which Pasteur and Messrs. Chamberland and 
Koux agreed to give up to the Institute. 

" It is thus, Sir," concluded the treasurer, directly addressing 
Pasteur, ' that public generosity, practical help trom the 
Government, and your own disinterestedness have founded and 
consolidated the establishment which we are to-day inaugurat- 
ing." And, persuaded that the solicitude of the public would 
never fail to support this great work, " This is for you, Sir, a 
rare and almost unhoped for happiness; let it console you for 
the passionate st: i, the terrible anxiety and the many 

emotions you have gone through." 

steur, overcome by his feelings, had to ask his son to r I 
bis speech It began by a rapid summary of what France I 
done for education in all its degrees. "From village schools 
to laboratories, everything has been founded or renovated." 
After acknowledging the help given him in later years by the 
public authorities, he continued — 

1885—1888 221 

" And when the day came that, foreseeing the future which 
would be opened by the discovery of the attenuation of virus, I 
appealed to my country, so that we should be allowed, through 
the strength and impulse of private initiative, to build labora- 
tories to be devoted, not only to the prophylactic treatment of 
hydrophobia, but also to the study of virulent and contagious 
diseases — on that day again, France gave in handfuls. . . . It is 
now finished, this great building, of which it might be said that 
there is not a stone but what is the material sign of a generous 
thought. All the virtues have subscribed to build this dwelling 
place for work. 

"Alas! mine is the bitter grief that I enter it, a man 
'vanquished by Time,' deprived of my masters, even of my 
companions in the struggle, Dumas, Bouley, Paul Bert, and 
lastly Vulpian, who, after having been with you, my dear 
Grancher. my counsellor at the very first, became the most 
energetic, the most convinced champion of this method. 

" However, if I have the sorrow of thinking that they are no 
more, after having valiantly taken their part in discussions 
which I have never provoked but have had to endure ; if they 
cannot hear me proclaim all that I owe to their counsels and 
support ; if I feel their absence as deeply as on the morrow of 
their death , I have at least the consolation of believing that all 
that we struggled for together will not perish. The collaborators 
and pupils who are now here share our scientific faith. ..." 
He continued, as in a sort of testament : ' Keep your early 
enthusiasm, dear collaborators, but let it ever be regulated by 
rigorous examinations and tests. Never advance anything 
which cannot be proved in a simple and decisive fashion. 

" Worship the spirit of criticism. If reduced to itself, it is 
not an awakener of ideas or a stimulant to great things, but, 
without it, everything is fallible ; it always has the last word. 
What I am now asking you, and you will ask of your pupils 
later on, is what is most difficult to an inventor. 

" It is indeed a hard task, when you believe you have found 
an important scientific fact and are feverishly anxious to publish 
it, to constrain yourself for days, weeks, years sometimes, to 
fight with yourself, to try and ruin your own experiments and 
only to proclaim your discovery after having exhausted all 
contrary hypotheses. 

" But when, after so many efforts, you have at last arrived 
at a certainty, your joy is one of the greatest which can be felt 


by a human soul, and the thought that you will have contributed 
to the honour of your country renders that joy still deeper. 

" If science has no country, the scientist should have one, and 
ascribe to it the influence which his works may have in this 
world. If I might be allowed, M. le President, to conclude by 
a philosophical remark inspired by your presence in this Home 
of Work, I should say that two contrary laws seem to be wrest- 
ling with each other nowadays ; the one, a law of blood and of 
death, ever imagining new means of destruction and forcing 
nations to be constantly ready for the battlefield — the other, a 
law of peace, work and health, ever evolving new means of 
delivering man from the scourges which beset him. 

" The one seeks violent conquests, the other the relief of 
humanity. The latter places one human life above any victory : 
while the former would sacrifice hundreds and thousands of lives 
to the ambition of one. The law of which we are the instru- 
ments seeks, even in the midst of carnage, to cure the sanguinary 
ills of the law of war ; the treatment inspired by our antiseptic 
methods may preserve thousands of soldiers. Which of those 
two laws will ultimately prevail, God alone knows. But 
may assert that French Science will have tried, by obeying the 
law of Humanity, to extend the frontiers of Life." 


In this Institute, which Pasteur entered ill and weary, he con- 
templated with joy those large laboratories, which would enable 
his pupils to work with ease and to attract around them investi- 
gators from all countries. He was happy to think that the 
material difficulties which had hampered him would be spared 
those who came after him. He believed in the realization of his 
wishes for peace, work, mutual help among men. Whatever the 
obstacles, he was persuaded that science would continue its 
civilizing progress and that its benefits would spread from 
domain to domain. Differing from those old men who are ever 
praising the past, he had an enthusiastic confidence in the 
future; he foresaw great developments of his studies, some of 
which were already apparent. His first researches on 
crystallography and molecular dissymmetry had served as a basis 
to stereo-chemistry. But, while he followed the studies on that 
subject of Le Bel and Van t'Hoff , he continued to regret that 
he had not been able to revert to the studies of his youth, 
enslaved as he had been by the inflexible logical sequence of his 
works. ;< Every time we have had the privilege of hearing 
Pasteur speak of his early researches," writes M. Chamberland, 
in an article in the Revue Scientifique, "we have seen the 
revival in him of a smouldering fire, and we have thought that 
his countenance showed a vague regret at having forsaken them. 
Who can now say what discoveries he might have made in that 
direction? ' "One day," said Dr. Hericourt— who spent the 
summer near Villeneuve l'Etang, and who often came into the 
Park with his two sons—" he favoured me with an admirable, 
captivating discourse on this subject, the like of which I have 
never heard." 

Pasteur, instead of feeling regret, might have looked back 
with calm pride on the progress he had made in other directions. 


In what obscurity were fermentation and infection enveloped 
before his time, and with what light he had penetrated them ! 
When he had discovered the all-powerful role of the infin: - 
simally 6mall, he had actually mastered some of those living 
perms, causes of disease; he had transformed them from 
destructive to preservative agents. Not only had he renovated 
medicine and surgery, but hygiene, misunderstood and 
D( fleeted until then, was benefiting by the experimental 
method. Light was being thrown on preventive measures. 

M. Henri Monod, Director of Hygiene and Public Charities . 
one day quoted, a propos of sanitary measures, these words of 
the great English Minister, Disraeli— 

' Public health is the foundation upon which rest the happi- 
ness of the people and the power of the State. Take the most 
beautiful kingdom, give it intelligent and laborious citizens, 
prosperous manufactures, productive agriculture; let ai 
flourish, let architects cover the land with temples and palaces ; 
in order to defend all these riches, have first-rate wear* 
fleets of torpedo boats — if the population remains stationary, if 
it decreases yearly in vigour and in stature, the nation must 
perish. And that is why I consider that the first duty of a 
statesman is the care of Public Health." 

In 1889, when the International Congress of Hygiene met in 
Faris, M. Brouardel was able to say — 

" If echoes from this meeting could reach them . . . our 
ancestors would learn that a revolution, the most formidable 
for thirty centuries, has shaken medical science to its v 
foundations, and that it is the work of a stranger to their 
corporation ; and their sons do not cry Anathema, they admire 
him, bow to his laws. . . . We all proclaim ourselves disciples 
of Pasteur." 

On the \i iv day after those words were pronoun. < d, 1'asteur 
saw the realization of one of his most ardent wishes, the 
inauguration of the new Sorbonne. At the sight of the won- 
derful facilities for work offered by this palace, he n memtx 
Claude ]'( rnard'a cellar, his own garret at the Ecole Normale. 
and felt a movement of patriotic prid' 

In October, 1889, though his health remained shaken, he 
insisted on going to Alais, where a statue was being raised to 
J. B. Dumas. Many of his colleagues tried to di>suade him 
from this long and fatiguing journey, but he said : ' I am 
alive, I shall go." At the foot of the statue, he spoke of his 

1889—1895 225 

master, one of those men who are "the tutelary spirits of a 

The sericicultors, desiring to thank him for the five years 
he had spent in studying the silkworm disease, offered him an 
artistic souvenir : a silver heather twig laden with gold cocoons. 

Pasteur did not fail to remind them that it was at the 
request of their fellow citizen that he had studied pebrine. 
He said, "In the expression of your gratitude, by which I 
am deeply touched, do not forget that the initiative was due to 
M. Dumas." 

Thus his character revealed itself on every occasion. Every 
morning, with a step rendered heavy by age and ill-health, 
he went from his rooms to the Hydrophobia Clinic, arriving 
there long before the patients. He superintended the prepara- 
tion of the vaccinal marrows; no detail escaped him. When 
the time came for inoculations, he was already informed of each 
patient's name, sometimes of his poor circumstances; he had 
a kind word for every one, often substantial help for the very 
poor. The children interested him most ; whether severely 
bitten, or frightened at the inoculation, he dried their tears 
and consoled them. How many children have thus kept a 
memory of him ! " When I see a child," he used to say, " he 
inspires me with two feelings : tenderness for what he is now, 
respect for what he may become hereafter." 

Already in May, 1892, Denmark, Sweden, and Norway had 
formed various Committees of scientists and pupils of Pasteur 
to celebrate his seventieth birthday. In France, it was in 
November that the Medical and Surgical Section of the 
Academy of Sciences constituted a Subscription Committee to 
offer Pasteur an affectionate homage. Eoty, the celebrated 
engraver, was desired to finish a medal he had already begun, 
representing Pasteur in profile, a skull cap on his broad fore- 
head, the brow strongly prominent, the whole face full of 
energy and meditation. His shoulders are covered with the 
cape he usually wore in the morning in the passages of his 
Institute. Koty had not time to design a satisfactory reverse 
side ; he surrounded with laurels and roses the following 
inscription: 'To Pasteur, on his seventieth birthday. 
France and Humanity grateful." 

On the morning of December 27, 1892, the great theatre of 
the Sorbonne was filled. The seats of honour held the French 


and foreign delegates from Scientific Societies, the members 
of the Institute, and the Professors of Faculties. In the 
amphitheatre were the deputations from the Ecoles Normale. 
Polytechnique, Centrale, of Pharmacy, Vetennaires, and of 
Agriculture— deep masses of students. People pointed out 
to each other Pasteur's pupils, Messrs. Duclaux, Roux, 
Chamberland, Metchnikoff, in their places; M. Perdrix, a 
former Normalien, now an Agregi-priparateur ; M. Edouard 
Calmette, a former student of the Ecole Centrale, who had 
taken part in the studies on beer ; and M. Denys Cochin, who, 
thirteen years before, had studied alcoholic fermentation in 
the laboratory of the Rue d'Ulm. The first gallery was full 
of those who had subscribed towards the presentation about 
to be made to Pasteur. In the second gallery, boys from 
lycees crowned the immense assembly with a youthful garland. 

At half past 10 o'clock, whilst the band of the Republican 
Guard played a triumphal march, Pasteur entered, leaning 
on the arm of the President of the Republic. Carnot led him 
to a little table, whereon the addresses from the various dele- 
gates were to be laid. The Presidents of the Senate and of 
the Chamber, the Ministers and Ambassadors, took their seats 
on the platform. Behind the President of the Republic stood, 
in their uniform, the official delegates of the five Academies 
which form the Institut de France. The Academy of Medi- 
cine and the great Scientific Societies were represented by their 
presidents and life-secretaries. 

M. Charles Dupuy, Minister of Public Instruction, rose to 
speak, and said, after retracing Pasteur's great works— 

" Who can now say how much human life owes to you and 
how much more it will owe to you in the future ! The day will 
come wlun another Lucretius will sing, in a new poem on 
Nature, the immortal Master whose genius engendered such 

" Ho will not describe him as a solitary, unfeeling man, like 
the hero of the Latin poet ; but he will show him mingling 
with the life of his time, with the joys and trials of his country, 
dividing his life between the stern enjoyment of scientific 
research and the sweet communion of family intercourse ; 
going from the laboratory to his hearth, finding in his < : 
ones, particularly in the helpmeet who has understood him 
so well and loved him all the better for it, that comforting 
encouragement of every hour and each moment, without which 

1889—1895 227 

so many struggles might have exhausted his ardour, arrested 
his perseverance, and enervated his genius. . . . 

" May France keep you for many more years, and show you 
to the world as the worthy object of her love, of her gratitude 
and pride." 

The President of the Academy of Sciences, M. d'Abbadie. 
was chosen to present to Pasteur the commemorative medal of 
this great day. 

Joseph Bertrand said that the same science, wide, accurate, 
and solid, had been a foundation to all Pasteur's works, each 
of them shining " with such a dazzling light, that, in looking 
at either, one is inclined to think that it eclipses all others." 

After a few words from M. Daubree, senior member of the 
Mineralogical Section and formerly a colleague of Pasteur's at 
the Strasburg Faculty, the great Lister, who represented the 
Royal Societies of London and Edinburgh, brought to Pasteur 
the homage of medicine and surgery. "You have," said he, 
' ' raised the veil which for centuries had covered infectious 
diseases ; you have discovered and demonstrated their 
microbian nature." 

When Pasteur rose to embrace Lister, the sight of those 
two men gave the impression of a brotherhood of science 
labouring to diminish the sorrows of humanity. 

After a speech from M. Bergeron, Life-Secretary of the 
Academy of Medicine, and another from M. Sauton, President 
of the Paris Municipal Council, the various delegates pre- 
sented the addresses they had brought. Each of the large 
cities of Europe had its representative. The national dele- 
gates were called in their turn. A student from the Alfort 
Veterinary School brought a medal offered by the united 
Veterinary Schools of France. Amongst other offerings, 
Pasteur was given an album containing the signatures of the 
inhabitants of Arbois, and another coming from Dole, in which 
were reproduced a facsimile of his birth-certificate and a photo- 
graph of the house in which he was born. The sight of his 
father's signature at the end of the certificate moved him more 
than anything else. 

The Paris Faculty of Medicine was represented by its Dean, 
Professor Brouardel. " More fortunate than Harvey and than 
Jenner," he said, "you have been able to see the triumph of 
your doctrines, and what a triumph! ..." 

The last word of homage was pronounced by M. Devise, 

G G 


President of the Students' Association, who said to Pasteur 
' ' You have been very great and very good ; you have given 
a beautiful example to students." 

Pasteur's voice, made weaker than usual by his emotion, 
could not have been heard all over the large theatre ; his 
thanks were read out by his son — 

" Monsieur le President de la Republique, your presi 
transforms an intimate fete into a great ceremony, and makes 
of the simple birthday of a savant a special date for French 

" M. le Ministre, Gentlemen — In the midst of all this mag- 
nificence, my first thought takes me back to the melancholy 
memory of so many men of science who have known but trials. 
In the past, they had to struggle, against the prejudices which 
hampered their ideas. After those prejudices were vanquished 
they encountered obstacles and difficulties of all kinds. 

" Very few years ago, before the public authorities and 
the town councils had endowed science with splendid dwell- 
ings, a man whom I loved and admired, Claude Bernard, had, 
for a laboratory, a wretched cellar not far from here, low and 
damp. Perhaps it was there that he contracted the dis- 
which he died. When I heard what you were preparing for 
me here, the thought of him arose in my mind; I hail his 
great memory. 

" Gentlemen, by an ingenious and delicate thought, you s 
to make the whole of my life pass before my eyes. One of my 
Jura compatriots, the Mayor of Dole, has brought me a photo- 
graph of the very humble home where my father and mo1 
lived such a hard life. The presence of the students of the 
Ecole Normale brings back to me the glamour of my first 
scientific enthusiasms. The representatives of the Lille 
Faculty evok. memories of my first studies on crystallography 
1 fermentation, which opened to me a new world. What 
hopes seized upon me when 1 realized that there must be 
laws behind so many obscure phenomena ! You, my <1 
colleagues, have witnessed by what series of deductions it \ 
given to me. a disciple of the experimental method, to reach 
physiological studies. If I have sometimes disturbed the calm 
of our Academies by somewhat violent discussions, it was 
b - [ waa passionately defending truth. 

" And you, delegates from foreign nations, who have come 
from so far to give to France a proof of sympathy, you bring 

1889—1895 229 

me the deepest joy that can be felt by a man whose invincible 
belief is that Science and Peace will triumph over Ignorance 
and War, that nations will unite, not to destroy, but to build, 
and that the future will belong to those who will have done 
most for suffering humanity. I appeal to you, my dear Lister, 
and to you all, illustrious representatives of medicine and 

'Young men, have confidence in those powerful and safe 
methods, of which we do not yet know all the secrets. And, 
whatever your career may be, do not let yourselves become 
tainted by a deprecating and barren scepticism, do not let 
yourselves be discouraged by the sadness of certain hours 
which pass over nations. Live in the serene peace of 
laboratories and libraries. Say to yourselves first : ' What 
have I done for my instruction ? ' and , as you gradually 
advance, 'What have I done for my country?' until the time 
comes when you may have the immense happiness of thinking 
that you have contributed in some way to the progress and to 
the good of humanity. But, whether our efforts are or not 
favoured by life, let us be able to say, when we come near the 
great goal, ' I have done what I could.' 

"Gentlemen, I would express to you my deep emotion and 
hearty gratitude. In the same way as Eoty, the great artist, 
has, on the back of this medal, hidden under roses the heavy 
number' of years which weigh on my life, you have, my dear 
colleagues, given to my old age the most delightful sight of 
all this living and loving youth." 

The shouts ' Vive Pasteur ! ' resounded throughout the 
building. The President of the Republic rose, went towards 
Pasteur to congratulate him, and embraced him with effusion. 

Hearts went out to Pasteur even from distant countries. 
The Canadian Government, acting on the suggestion of the 
deputies of the province of Quebec, gave the name of Pasteur 
to a district on the borders of the state of Maine. 

A few weeks after the fete, the Governor-General of Algeria, 
M. Cambon, wrote to Pasteur as follows — 

' ' Sir — Desirous of showing to you the special gratitude which 
Algeria bears you for the immense services you have rendered 
to science and to humanity by your great and fruitful dis- 
coveries, I have decided that your name should be given to 
the village of Seriana, situated in the arrondissemtnt of Batna, 

G G 2 


department of Constantino. I am happy that I have been 
able to render this slight homage to your illustrious person." 
" I feel a deep emotion," replied Pasteur. " in thinking that, 
thanks to you, my name will remain attached to that corner 
of the world. When a child of this village asks what v. 
the origin of this denomination, I should like the schoolmaster 
to tell him simply that it is the name of a Frenchman who 
loved France very much, and who, by serving her, contribu- 
to the good of humanity. My heart is thrilled at the thou, 
that my name might one day awaken the first feelings of 
patriotism in a child's soul. I shall owe to you this great joy 
in my old age; I thank you more than I can say.*' The 
origin of Seriana is very ancient. M. Stephane Gsell rel; 
that this village was occupied long before the coming of - 
Romans, by a tribe- which became Christian, as ia seen by ruins 
of chapels and basilicas. It is situated on the slope of a 
mountain covered with oaks and cedars, and giving rise to 
springs of fresh water. A bust of Pasteur was soon a: 
erected in this village, at the request of the inhabitants. 

Enthusiasm for Pasteur was spreading every wl; 
Women understood that science was entering their domain. 
6ince it served charity. They gave magnificent gifts ; clan 
in wills bore these words : "To Pasteur, to help in his 
humanitarian task." In November, 1S93, Pasteur s 
unknown lady enter his study in the Rue Dutot, and heard her 
speak thus : " There must be some students who love scie> 
and who, having to earn their living, cannot give themse 
up to disinterested work. I should like to place at your dis- 
posal four scholarships, for four young men chosen by you. 

ch scholarship would be of 3,000 fr. ; 2,400 for the u 
themselves, and 600 fr. for the expenses they would incur in 
your laboratories. Their lives would be rendered easier. You 
could find amongst them, either an immediate collaborator 
for your Institute or a missionary whom you might send far 
away; and if a medical career tempted them, they would 
enabled by their momentary independence to prepare them- 
all the better for tluir profession. I only ask one thing, 
which is that my name should not be mentioned." 

Pasteur was infinitely touched by the scheme of this D 
terious lady. The scholarship foundation was for one year only . 
but other years were about to follow and to rest cable this or; 

1889—1895 231 

Many letters brought to Pasteur requested that he should 
study or order the study of such and such a disease. Some of 
these letters responded to preoccupations which had long been 
in the mind of Pasteur and his disciples. One day he received 
these lines : 

" You have done all the good a man could do on earth. If 
you will, you can surely find a remedy for the horrible disease 
called diphtheria. Our children, to whom we teach your name 
as that of a great benefactor, will owe their lives to you. — 
A Mother." 

Pasteur, in spite of his failing strength, had hopes that he 
would yet live to see the defeat of the foe so dreaded by 
mothers. In the laboratory of the Pasteur Institute, Dr. Eoux 
and Dr. Yersin were obstinately pursuing the study of this 
disease. In their first paper on the subject, modestly entitled 
A Contribution to the Study of Diphtheria, they said : ' Ever 
since Bretonneau, diphtheria has been looked upon as a specific 
and contagious disease ; its study has therefore been under- 
taken of late years with the help of the microbian methods 
which have already been the means of finding the cause of 
many other infectious diseases." 

In spite of the convictions of Bretonneau, who had, in 1818, 
witnessed a violent epidemic of croup in the centre of France, 
his view was far from being generally adopted. Velpeau, 
then a young student, wrote to him in 1820 that all the 
members, save two, of the Faculty of Medicine were agreed 
in opposing or blaming his opinions. Another brilliant pupil 
of Bretonneau' s, Dr. Trousseau, who never ceased to cor- 
respond with his old master, wrote to him in 1854 : " It remains 
to be proved that diphtheria always comes from a germ. I 
hardly doubt this with regard to small-pox ; to be consistent , I 
ought not to doubt it either with regard to diphtheria. I was 
thinking so this morning, as I was performing tracheotomy 
on a poor child twenty-eight months old; opposite the bed, 
there was a picture of his five-year-old brother, painted on his 
death-bed. He had succumbed five years ago, to malignant 

Knowing Bretonneau 's ideas on contagion, Trousseau wrote 
further down : " I shall have the beds and bedding burnt, the 
paper hangings also, for they have a velvety and attractive 


surface ; I 6hall tell the mother to purify herself like a Hindoo 
—else what would you say to me! " 

A German of the name of Klebs discovered the bacillus of 
diphtheria in 1883, by studying the characteristic membranes; 
it was afterwards i 1 by Loeffler, another German. 

Pure cultures of this bacillus, injected on the surface of the 
excoriated fauces of rabbits, guinea and pigeons, pro- 

duce the diphtheritic membranes : Messrs. Roux and Yersin 
demonstrated this fact and ascertained the method of its deadly 

Dr. Eoux, in a lecture to the London Royal Society, in 1889, 
said : " Microbes are chiefly dangerous on account of the toxic 
matters which they produce." He recalled that I ii had 

been the first to investigate the action of the toxic product! 
elaborated by the microbe of chicken-cholera. By filtering 
the culture, Pasteur had obtained a liquid which contained no 
microbes. Hens inoculated with this liquid presents! all the 
symptoms of cholera. " This experiment shows i con- 

tinued M. Roux, "that the chemical products contained in 
the culture are capable by themselves of provoking I 

aptoma of the disease ; it is therefore very probable that I 
same products are prepared within the body itself of a hen 
..t tacked with cholera. It has been shown since then that 
many pathogenic microbes manufactured these toxic products. 
The microbes of typhoid fever, of cholera, of blue pus, of acute 
experimental septicaemia, of diphtheria, are great poison-pro- 
ducers. The cultures of the diphtheria bacillus particularly 
are, after a certain time, so full of the toxin that, without 
microbes, and in infinitesimal doses, they cause the death of 
the animals with all the signs observed after inoculation with 
the microbe itself. The picture of the disease is complr 
even presenting the ensuing paralysis if the injected dose 
too weak to bring about a rapid death. Death in infectious 
diseases is therefore caused by intoxication." 

This bacillus, like that ol tetanus, secretes a poison which 
reaches the kidneys, attacks the nervous system, and acts on 
the heart, the beata of which are accelerated or suddenly 
arrested. Sheltered in the membrane like a foe in an ambush, 
the microbe manufactures its deadly poison. Diphtheria, as 
defined by M. Roux, is an intoxication caused by a very active 
poison formed by the microbe within the restricted area 
v. herein it develops. 

1S89— 1895 

It was sufficient to examine a portion of diphtheritic 
membrane to distinguish the diphtheritic bacilli, tiny rods 
resembling short needles laid across each other. Other 
microbes were frequently associated with these bacilli, and it 
became necessary to study microbian associations in diphtheria. 
The Klebs-Loeffler bacillus, disseminated in broth, gave 
within a month or three weeks a richly toxic culture ; the 
bottom of the vessel was covered with a thick deposit of 
microbes, and a film of younger bacilli floated on the surface. 
By filtering this broth and freeing it from microbes, Messrs. 
Koux and Yersin made a great discovery : they obtained pure 
toxin, capable of killing, in forty-eight hours, a guinea-pig 
inoculated with one-tenth of a cubic centimetre of it. 

Now that the toxin was found, the remedy, the antitoxin, 
could be discovered. This was done by Behring, a German 
scientist, and by Kitasato, a Japanese physician. Drs. Bichet 
and Hericourt had already opened the way in 1888, while 
studying another disease. 

M. Koux inoculated a horse with diphtheritic toxin miti- 
gated by the addition of iodine, in doses, very weak at first, 
but gradually stronger ; the horse grew by degrees capable of 
resisting strong doses of pure toxin. It was then bled by 
means of a large trocar introduced into the jugular vein, the 
blood received in a bowl was allowed to coagulate, and the 
liquid part of it, the serum, was then collected; this serum 
was antitoxic, antidiphtheritic — in one word, the long-desired 

At the beginning of 1894, M. Boux had several horses 
rendered immune by the above process. He desired to prove 
the efficiency of the serum in the treatment of diphtheria, with 
the collaboration of MM. Martin and Chaillou, who had, both 
clinically and bacteriologically, studied more than 400 cases of 

There are in Baris two hospitals where diphtheritic children 
are taken in. It was decided that the new treatment should 
be applied at the hospital of the Enfants Malades, whilst the 
old system should be continued at the Hopital Trousseau. 

From February 1, MM. Koux, Martin, and Chaillou paid a 
daily visit to the Enfants Malades ; they treated all the little 
diphtheria patients by injection, in the side, of a dose of twenty 
cubic centimetres of serum, followed, twenty-four hours later, 
by another dose of twenty, or only of ten cubic centimetres. 


Almost invariably, not only did the membranes cease to 
increase during the twenty-four hours following the first injec- 
tion, but they began to come away within thirty-six or fo? 
eight hours, the third day at the latest ; the livid, leaden pale- 
ness of the face disappeared ; the child was saved. 

From L890 to 1893 there had been 3,971 cases of diphtheria, 
fata] m 2,029 cases, the average mortality being therefore 
per 100. The serum treatment, applied to hundreds of childr. 
brought it down to less than 24 per 100 in four months. At 
the Trousseau Hospital, where the serum was not employed, 
the mortality during the same period was 60 per 100. 

In May, M. Roux gave a lecture on diphtheria at Lille, at the 
request of the Provident Society of the Friends of Science, 
which held its general meeting in that town. Past.ur, who 
was president of the Society, came to Lille to thank its inhabi- 
tants for the support they had afforded for forty years to the 

The master and his disciple were received in the Hall of the 
Industrial Society. Pasteur listened with an admiring emotion 
to his pupil, whose rigorous experimentation, together with the 
beauty of the object in view, tilled him with enthusiasm. He 
who had said, ' Exhaust every combination, until the mind 
can conceive no others possible," was delighted to hear the 
methodical exposition of the manner in which this great problem 
had been attacked and solved. 

At the Hygiene and Demography Congress at Buda-Pesth, 
M. Roux. repeating and enlarging his lecture, made a com- 
munication on the serotherapy of diphtheria which created a 
great on in Europe. 

In France, prefects asked the Minister of the Interior how 
local physicians might obtain this antidiphtheritic serum. The 
Figaro ne er opened a subscription towards preserving 

children from croup ; it soon reached more than a million francs. 
The Pasteur Institute was now able to build gtables, buy a 
hundred horses, render them immune, and constitute a per- 
nent o r ition for serotherapy. In three months, 50,000 

doses of serum were about to be given away. 

Pasteur, who was then at Arbois, followed every detail with 
passionate interest. Sitting under the old quinces in his little 
garden, he read the lists of subscribers, names of little children, 
offering charitable gifts a* they entered this life, and names of 
sorrowing parents, giving in the names of dear lost ones. 

1889—1895 205 

When he started again for Paris, October 4, 1894, Pasteur 
was seized again with the melancholy feeling which had 
attended His first departure from his home, when he was sixteen 
years old. He saw the same grey sky, the same fine rain and 
misty horizon, as he looked for the last time upon the distant 
hills and wide plains he loved, perhaps conscious that it was 
so. But he remained silent, as was his wont when troubled by 
his thoughts, his sadness only revealing itself to those who 
lovingly watched every movement of his countenance. 

On October 6, the Pasteur Institute was invaded by a crowd 
of medical men ; M. Martin gave a special lecture in compliance 
with the desire of many practitioners unaccustomed to labora- 
tory work, who desired to understand the diagnosis of diphtheria 
and the mode in which the serum should be used. Pasteur, 
from his study window, was watching all this coming and going 
in his Institute. A twofold feeling was visible on his worn 
features : a sorrowing regret that his age now disarmed him for 
work, but also the satisfaction of feeling that his work was 
growing day by day, and that other investigators would, in a 
similar spirit, pursue the many researches which remained to 
be undertaken. About that time, M. Yersin, now a physician 
in the colonies, communicated to the Annals of the Pasteur 
Institute the discovery of the plague bacillus. He had been 
desired to go to China in order to study the nature of the 
scourge, its conditions of propagation, and the most efficient 
means of preventing it from attacking the French possessions, 
Pasteur had long recognized very great qualities in this pupil 
whose habits of silent labour were almost those of an ascete. 
M. Yersin started with a missionary's zeal. When he reached 
Hong-Kong, three hundred Chinese had already succumbed, 
and the hospitals of the colony were full ; he immediately recog- 
nized the symptoms of the bubonic plague, which had ravaged 
Europe on many occasions. He noticed that the epidemic 
raged principally in the slums occupied by Chinese of the poorer 
classes, and that in the infected quarters there were a great 
many rats which had died of the plague. Pasteur read with 
the greatest interest the following lines, so exactly in accord- 
ance with his own method of observation : ' ' The peculiar apti- 
tude to contract plague possessed by certain animals," wrote 
M. Yersin, " enabled me to undertake an experimental study 
of the disease under very favourable circumstances ; it was 
obvious that the first thing to do was to look for a microbe in 


the blood of the patients and in the bubonic pulp." When 
M. V< r. in inoculated rats, mice, or guin - with this pi. 

the animals died, and he found several bacilli in the ganglio 
spleen, and blood. After some attempts at cultures and inocula- 
tions, he concluded thus : " The plague is a CO! IS and 
inoculable disease. It seems likely thai rats constitute its 
principal vehicle, but I have also ascertained that flits can 
contract the disease and die of it, and may therefore become 
its for its transmission." 

At the very time win n M. Yersin was discovering the specific 
bacillus of the plague in the bubonic pulp, Kitasato was making 
similar investigations. The foe now being recognized, hopes 
of vanquishing it might be entertained. 

And whilst those good tidings were arriving, Pasteur 
reading a new work by M. Metchnikoff, a Kussian scientist, 
who had elected to come to France for the privilege of working 
by the side of Pasteur. M. Metchnikoff explained by the 
action of the white corpuscles of the blood, named " leuco- 
cytes," the immunity or resistance, either natural or acquired, 
of the organism against a defined disease. These corpus* 
may be considered as soldiers entrusted with the defence of the 
organism against foreign invasions. If microbes penetrate into 
the tissues, the defenders gather all their force- e her and a 
free fight ensues. The organism resists or succumbs accord- 
ing to the power or inferiority of the white blood-cells. If the 
invading microbe is surrounded, eaten up, and ingested by the 
victorious white corpuscles (also named phagocytt s . the latl 
find in their victory itself fresh reserve forces against a renewed 

On November 1, in the midst of all this laborious activity 
and daily pn . Pasteur was about to pay his daily visit 

to his grandchildren, when he was seized by a violent attack of 
urn?mia. He was laid on his bed, and remained nearly uncon- 
scious for four hours; the sweat of agony bathed his forch' 
and his whole body, and his < y> B remain The I ?< n- 

ing brought with it a ray of hope; he was aide to speak, and 
asked not to be left alone. Immediate dang< r . 1 avoided. 

but great anxiety continued to be felt. 

It was easy to organi/e a series of devoted nurses; all 
Pasteur's disciples were eager to watch by his bedside. Ev 
evening, two {nrsons took their seats in his room : one a 

1889—1895 237 

member of the family, and one a "Pastorian." About one 
a.m. they were replaced by another Pastorian and another 
member of the family. From November 1 to December 25, the 
laboratory workers continued this watching, regulated by Dr. 
Roux as follows : — 

Sunday night, Roux and Chantemesse ; Monday, Queyrat and 
Marmier ; Tuesday, Borrel and Martin; Wednesday, Mesnil 
and Pottevin ; Thursday, Marchoux and Viala ; Friday, Cal- 
mette and Veillon ; Saturday, Eenon and Morax. A few altera- 
tions were made in this order ; Dr. Marie claimed the privilege. 
M. Metchnikoff, full of anxiety, came and went continually 
from the laboratory to the master's room. After the day's 
work, each faithful watcher came in, bringing books or notes, 
to go on with the work begun, if the patient should be able to 
sleep. In the middle of the night, Mme. Pasteur would 
come in and send awa} 7 with a sweet authority one of the two 
volunteer nurses. Pasteur's loving and faithful wife was 
straining every faculty of her valiant and tender soul to conjure 
the vision of death which seemed so near. In spite of all her 
courage, there were hours of weakness, at early dawn, when 
life was beginning to revive in the quiet neighbourhood, when 
she could not keep her tears from flowing silently. Would 
they succeed in saving him whose life was so precious, so 
useful to others? In the morning, Pasteur's two grand- 
children came into the bedroom. The little girl of fourteen, 
fully realizing the prevailing anxiety, and rendered serious 
by the sorrow she struggled to hide, talked quietly with 
him. The little boy, only eight years old, climbed on to his 
grandfather's bed, kissing him affectionately and gazing on 
the loved face which always found enough strength to smile 
at him. 

Dr. Chantemesse attended Pasteur with an incomparable 
devotion. Dr. Gille, who had often been sent for by Pasteur 
when staying at Villeneuve l'Etang, came to Paris from 
Garches to see him. Professor Guyon showed his colleague 
the most affectionate solicitude. Professor Dieulafoy was 
brought in one morning by M. Metchnikoff ; Professor 
Grancher, who was ill and away from Paris, hurried back to 
his master's side. 

How often did they hang over him, anxiously following the 
respiratory rhythm due to the uremic intoxication ! movements 
slow at first, then rapid, accelerated, gasping, slackening again, 


and arrested in a long pause of several seconds, during which 
all seemed suspended. 

At the end of December, a marked improvement took place. 
On January 1, after seeing all his collaborators, down to the 
youngest laborator\ r attendant, Pasteur received the visit of 
one of his colleagues of the Academie Francaise. It was Alex- 
andre Dumas, carrying a bunch of roses, and accompanied by 
one of his daughters. " I want to begin the year well," he 
said: "I am bringing you my good wishes." Pasteur and 
Alexandre Dumas, meeting at the Academy every Thursday 
for twelve years, felt much attraction towards each other. 
Pasteur, charmed from the first by this dazzling and witty in- 
tellect, had been surprised and touched by the delicate attentions 
of a heart which only opened to a chosen few. Dumas, who 
had observed many men, loved and admired Pasteur, a modest 
and kindly genius ; for this dramatic author hid a man thirsting 
for moral action, his realism was lined with mysticism, and he 
placed the desire to be useful above the hunger for fame. His 
blue eyes, usually keen and cold, easily detecting secret 
thoughts and looking on them with irony, were full of an ex- 
pression of affectionate veneration when they rested on ' ' our 
dear and great Pasteur," as he called him. Alexandre Dumas' 
visit gave Pasteur very great pleasure ; he compared it to a ray 
of sunshine. 

As he could not go out, those who did not come to see him 
thought him worse than he really was. It was therefore with 
great surprise that people heard that he would be pleased to 
receive the old Normaliens, who were about to celebrate the 
centenary of their school, and who, after putting up a memorial 
plate on the small laboratory of the Rue d'Ulm, desired to visit 
the Pasteur Institute. They filed one after another into the 
drawing-room on the first floor. Pasteur, seated by the fire, 
seemed to revive the old times when he used to welcome young 
men into his home circle on Sunday evenings. He had an 
affectionate word or a smile for each of those who now passed 
before him, bowing low. Every one was struck with the keen 
expression of his eyes ; never had the strength of his intellect 
seemed more independent of the weakness of his body. Many 
believed in a speedy recovery and rejoiced. 'Your health," 
said some one, " is not only national but universal property." 

On that day, Dr. Roux had arranged on tables, in the large 

1889—1895 289 

laboratory, the little flasks which Pasteur had used in his ex- 
periments on so-called spontaneous generation, which had been 
religiously preserved ; also rows of little tubes used for studies 
on wines ; various preparations in various culture media ; 
microbes and bacilli, so numerous that it was difficult to know 
which to see first. The bacteria of diphtheria and bubonic 
plague completed this museum. 

Pasteur was carried into the laboratory about twelve o'clock, 
and Dr. Roux showed his master the plague bacillus through 
a microscope. Pasteur, looking at these things, souvenirs of 
his own work and results of his pupils' researches, thought of 
those disciples who were continuing his task in various parts 
of the world. In France, he had just sent Dr. Calmette to 
Lille, where he soon afterwards created a new and admirable 
Pasteur Institute. Dr. Yersin was continuing his investiga- 
tions in China. A Normalien, M. Le Dantec, who had entered 
the Ecole at sixteen at the head of the list, and who had after- 
wards become a curator at the laboratory, was in Brazil, study- 
ing yellow fever, of which he very nearly died. Dr. Adrien 
Loir, after a protracted mission in Australia, was head of a 
Pasteur Institute at Tunis. Dr. Nicolle was setting up a 
laboratory of bacteriology at Constantinople. ' There is still 
a great deal to do ! " sighed Pasteur as he affectionately pressed 
Dr. Eoux' hand. 

He was more than ever full of a desire to allay human suffer- 
ing, of a humanitarian sentiment which made of him a citizen 
of the world. But his love for France was in no wise diminished, 
and the permanence of his patriotic feelings was, soon after 
this, revealed by an incident. The Berlin Academy of Sciences 
was preparing a list of illustrious contemporary scientists to be 
submitted to the Kaiser with a view to conferring on them the 
badge of the Order of Merit. As Pasteur's protest and return 
of his diploma to the Bonn University had not been forgotten, 
the Berlin Academy, before placing his name on the list, de- 
sired to know whether he would accept this distinction at the 
hands of the German Emperor. Pasteur, while acknowledging 
with courteous thanks the honour done to him as a scientist, 
declared that he could not accept it. 

For him, as for Victor Hugo, the question of Alsace-Lor- 
raine was a question of humanity ; the right of peoples to 
dispose of themselves was in question. And by a bitter irony 
of Fate, France, which had proclaimed this principle all over 


Europe, saw Alsace torn away from her. And by whom? by 
the very nation whom she had looked upon as the most ideal- 
istic, with whom she had desired an alliance in a noble h 
of pacific civilization, a hope shared by Humboldt, the great 
German scientist. 

It was obvious to those who came Dear Pasteur that, in spite 
of the regret caused in him by the decrease of his ph 
strength, his moral energy remained unimpaired. He ne- 
complained of the state of his health, and usually avoided speak- 
ing of himself. A little tent had been put up for him in the 
new garden of the Pasteur Institute, under the young ch< 
nuts, the flowers of which were now beginning to fall, and 
he often spent his afternoons there. One or other of th 
who had watched over him through the long winter nighl 
quently came to talk with him, and he would inquire, with all 
his old interest, into every detail of the work going on. 

His old friend Chappuis, now Honorary Pector of the A 
demy of Dijon, often came to sit with him under this tent. 
Their friendship remained unchanged though it had las- 
more than fifty years. Their conversation now took a 
more exalted turn than in the days of their youth and middle 
age. The dignity of Chappius 1 life was almost austere, thou.uh 
tempered by a smiling philosophy. 

Pasteur, less preoccupied than Chappuis by philosophical 
discussions, soared without an effort into the domain of spirit- 
ual things. Absolute faith in God and in Eternity, and a con- 
viction that the power for good given to us in this world will 
be continued beyond it. were feelings which pervaded his whole 
life : the virtues of the Gospel had ever been present to him. 
Full of respect for the form of religion which had been that 
of his forefathers, he came to it simply and naturally for spirit- 
ual help in these last weeks of his life. 

On June 13, he came, for the list time, down the steps of 
the Pasteur Institute, and entered the carriage which -. 
take him to Villeneuve I'Etang. Every one spoke to him of 
this stay as if it were sure to bring him back to health. Did he 
believe it? Did he try, in his tenderness for those around him, 
to share their hopes? His fare almost bore the same exp: 
sion as when he used to go to Villeneuve I'Etang to continue I 
studies. When the carriage passed through Saint Cloud, so: 
of the inhabitants, who had seen him pass in former 3 

1889—1895 241 

saluted him with a mixture of emotion and respectful 

At Villeneuve l'Etang, the old stables of the Cent Garde3 
had reverted to their former purpose and were used for the 
preparation of the diphtheria antitoxin. There were about 
one hundred horses there ; old chargers, sold by the military 
authorities as unfit for further work ; racehorses thus ending 
their days ; a few, presents from their owners, such as Marshal 
Canrobert's old horse. 

Pasteur spent those summer weeks in his room or under the 
trees on the lawns of the Park. A few horses had been put 
out to grass, the stables being quite full, and occasionally came 
near, looking over their hurdles towards him. Pasteur felt 
a deep thankfulness in watching the busy comings and goings 
of Dr. Roux and his curator, M. Martin, and of the veterinary 
surgeon, M. Prevot, who was entrusted with the bleeding 
operations and the distribution of the flasks of serum. He 
thought of all that would survive him and felt that his weakened 
hand might now drop the torch which had set so many others 
alight. And, more than resigned, he sat peacefully under a 
beautiful group of pines and purple beeches, listening to the 
readings of Mme. Pasteur and of his daughter. They smiled 
on him with that valiant smile which women know how to keep 
through deepest anguish. 

Biographies interested him as of yore. There was at that 
time a renewal of interest in memories of the First Empire ; old 
letters, memoirs, war anecdotes were being published every 
day. Pasteur never tired of those great souvenirs. Many of 
those stories brought him back to the emotions of his youth, 
but he no longer looked with the same eyes on the glory of 
conquerors. The true guides of humanity now seemed to him 
to be those who gave devoted service, not those who ruled by 
might. After enjoying pages full of the thrill of battlefields, 
Pasteur admired the life of a great and good man, St. Vincent 
de Paul. He loved this son of poor peasants, proud to own 
his humble birth before a vainglorious society ; this tutor of a 
future cardinal, who desired to become the chaplain of some 
unhappy convicts; this priest, who founded the work of the 
Enfants Trouves, and who established lay and religious alliance 
over the vast domain of charity. 

Pasteur himself exerted a great and charitable influence 
The unknown lady who had put at his disposal four scholarships 


for young men without means came to him in August and 
offered him the funds for a Pasteur Hospital, the natural out- 
come, she said, of the Pastorian disco 1 . 

Pasteur's strength diminished day by day, he now could 
hardly walk. When he was seated in the Park, his grand- 
children around him suggested young rose trees climbing 
around the trunk of a dying oak. The paralysis was increas- 
ing, and speech was becoming more and more difficult. The 
s alone remained bright and clear ; Pasteur was witnessing 
the ruin of what in him was perishable 

How willingly they would have given a moment of their 
lives to prolong his, those thousands of human beings wh< 
existence had been saved by his methods : sick children, woi. 
in lying-in hospitals, patients operated upon in surgical war 
victims of rabid dogs saved from hydrophobia, and 60 m. 
others protected against the infinitesimally small! But, whi 
visions of those living beings passed through the minds of his 
family, it seemed as if Pasteur already saw those dead c 
who, like him, had preserved absolute faith in the Future Life. 

The last week in September he was no longer strong enough 
to leave his bed, his weakness was extreme. On Septem. 
27, as he was offered a cup of milk : " I cannot," he murmur 
his eyes looked around him with an unspeakable expression 
of resignation, love and farewell. His head fell back on 
fallows, and he slept; but, after this delusive rest, suddt 
came the gaspings of agony. For twenty-four hours he 
mained motionless, his eyes closed, his body almost entir 
tlyzed ; one of his hands rested in that of Mme. Pasteur, 
other held a cruci 

Thus, surrounded by his family and disciples, in this n 
of almost monastic simplicity, on Saturd mber . 

1895, at 4.40 in the afternoon. \ acefully, he passed 

Tub End. 





Abbadie, d', presents medals to 

Pasteur, ii, 227 
Abdul Aziz, Sultan, i, 141 
About, Edmond : 
On Pasteur, ii, 161 
On Pasteur's lecture at Sorbonne, 

i, 122 
Pamphlet quoted, i, 177 
Academie des Sciences, i, 29 note, 81 

During siege of Paris, i, 186 
Academie Francaise, Pasteur's re- 
ception at, ii, 123 
Aerobes, i, 99 
Agreyation, i, 31 note 
Alais : 

Pasteur goes to, i, 115, 117, 129, 

138, 155, 166 
Statue to J. B. Dumas at, ii, 224. 
Alexandria, French Mission to, 

ii, 155 
Alfort, experiments on sheep at, 

ii, 84 
Alsace-Lorraine question, ii, 239 
Amat, Mile., i, 170 
Anaerobes, i, 99, 220 
Andral, Dr., i, 160 

Advice to Pasteur, ii, 25 
Anglada, work "On Contagion" 

quoted, i, 80 
AnguMulce, i, 150 

Anthrax (splenic fever, charbon), 
ii, 35 seqq., 70 
Hens and, ii, 45, 55 

Commission on, ii, 56 
Vaccination against, ii, 89, 90 
Experiment, ii, 93, 95, 96, 98, 

106, 145, 146 
Results, ii, 103, 145, 146 
Antirabic inoculation on man, ii, 192 

Discussion on, ii, 212 
Anti- vivisect ion, Virchow on, ii, 110 
Aosta, Duke and Duchess of, i, 141 

Arago, i, 27 ; ii, 134 
On Monge, i, 195 
Speech before Chamber of De- 
puties, ii, 23 


Pasteur at, i, 6, 7, 180 ; ii, 198- 

Presentation to Pasteur from 

ii, 227 
Prussians at, i, 202 

Arboisian characteristics, i, 8 

Arcis-sur-Aube, battle of, i, 4 

Ardeche, i, 32 

Ardouin, Dr., ii, 158 

Aristotle, allusions to hydrophobia, 
ii, 185 

Arsonval, M. d', ii, 58 

Aselli, discoveries through vivisec- 
tion, ii, 114 

Aspartic acid, i, 57, 70 

Aspergillus niger, i, 204 

Aubenas, tribute to Pasteur, ii, 128, 

Augier, Emile, i, 174 

Aurillac, testimonial to Pasteur, 
ii, 151 


" Baccalaureat," i, 10 and note 
Baciocchi, Princess, leaves Villa 
Vicentina to Prince Im- 
perial, i, 173 
Bagneres-de-Luchon, ,i, 104 
Balard, lecturer at Ecole Normale, 
i, 29, 31, 56, 59, 100, 106 
Advice to Pasteur, i, 217 
Appeal to Pasteur, i, 217 
Discovers bromin, i, 32 
Inspector - General of Higher 

Education, i, 145 
On Pasteur's discovery, i, 40 
Bar-sur-Aube, 3rd Regiment at, i, 3 



Bar bet Boarding School, i, 10, 12, 21 

Barhet, M., i, 1". 

Barbier, Captain, i. 1" 

Barrnel, Dumas' Curator, i. ■_'■"< 

Bastian. 1 1 . ttacl 1' ■ or, ii, SI 

Beodry, Paul, i, 127 

Bazaine . i. 1K6 

i. 117 
Bplenic fever in, ii. 35, 54, 62, 92 

Bechamp, theory of fermentation, 
ii. 19 

Beclard, Permanent B ry of 

Academie de Medecine, 
ii, 87 
On Commission on hydrophobia, 
ii, 173 

Beer, Pasteur studies manufacture 
.i. -''7 -77. 

Behier, Dr., ii. 1 1 

Behring di antitoxin for 

diphtheria, ii, 233 

Bellaguet, M., i, 137 

Belle, Jeanne, wife of Claude Pas- 
teur, i. 8 

Bellevue, Chateau, Napoleon and 
William of Prussia meet 
at, i, 1 - -' 

Belntti, M., i, 206 

Berchon, sanitary director, Bor- 
deaux, ii, 118 

Bergeron, Jul 

Animal S t nvtary of Academic 

de Medecine, ii, 87 
On Pasteur's treatment <>f hy- 
drophobia, ii. 202 
Sp Pasteur Jubilee, ii 

Bernard, Claude, i. »- 

\- Lead* mil- ile Bffedecine, ii. •"• 
At Tuileries, i. 164 
l i .1, 1 36 
Experiment on dug, ii. 1 13 
Experiments on fermentation, 

Illness, i, 134 
Joins in Pasteur'a experiments, 

i, lot 

Letter t.. Deville, i, I 
Letter to Pasteur, i. I 
< ha Fermentation, i 

— Medicine, ii. 4 

— Pasteur's researches, i. 7-. s 7 

— Primal-. . ii, 22 

— Vivi s e cti on, ii, 111 

l ' athumoua notes, ii. 58, 66 

Senator, i. 17 J 

cholera, i. 

Bersot, K: :uoted on spon- 

tanea: ition, i. 

Bert, Paul, ii, 7.7. i 

Cl.i i • ur's work, ii, 1 

Experiments, ii, 41, 17" 

< > 1 1 Commi don on hydroph 

ii, 173 
Speech mi Pasteur's discoveries, 
ii, 23, 24 
bhelot, M. : 
Consulted l»y Pasteur, ii, i'17 
On alcoholic fernv 
BerthoUst, M.. ii, 26, 134 

. i, l'.T. 
Bertfllon, candidate for Academic de 

M decine, i 
Bertin. M.. ii. I 
At Ecole Normale, i, 19, 11"'. 

180, 188 
Character, i, 45, 1 16 
1 '■ • orof Phj Si issburg, 

_' 1 "J 
Bertraml. Joseph : 
Letters to I 
Sketch of, ii. 197 
Speech at ii rion <>f Pasteur 

Institute, ii, 21 
Speech eur Jubilt e, ii, 

Berzelius, i, 196 
Studies paratartaric acid, i, 
Theories <>f fermentation, i, 80; 
ii. 19 
Besancoii. .lean Henri PastetB at, 

Besson, Candidature for Senate, 

ii. 27 
Be on \i'ii. superintendent of 

Bigo, Manufactun ot alool 

i. 7' 
Biot, J. J., i, 27 

Attitude ton leous 

• ion, i. 69, 1"" 

Di .-!>. i. 101, I""-' 
Interview with Pasteur, i, 41 
Last letter. 1. 103 

I., bters '" J o sepl 
bar to 1 
< >lii ilier of Institute, i. 81 

Passion foi n tding, i, 89 
Pi ■iwwi Pasteur, i 
Biot, M . reterinarj do, at 

P Lilly le 
nient.'ii. 1 
Bischofisheim, Raphael, lends villa 
P . teur, ii, -11 



Bismarck, Prince : 

Armistice with France, i, 193 
Interview with Jules Favre, i, 184 
On Napoleon III, i, 182 
Blondeau, registrar of mortgages, 

i, 13 
Bollene, Pasteur at, ii, 138 
Bonaparte, Elisa, at Villa Vicen- 

tina, i, 173 
Bonn, 80us~pr6fecture, i, 189 

University, i, 189 
Bonnat, portrait of Pasteur, ii, 218 
Bordeaux, Pasteur at, ii, 116 
Bordighera : 

Earthquake at, ii, 214 
Pasteur at, ii, 212 
Borrell attends on Pasteur, ii, 237 
Bouchardat, M. : 

On Commission of Hygiene, i, 186 
Report on remedies for hydropho- 
phobia, ii, 186 
Bouillaud, Dr. ii, 7, 40, 72 
Bouillier, M. F., Director of Ecole 

Normale, i, 145, 180 
Bouley, H., ii, 42, 56, 101, 132 
At experiment on earthworms, 

ii, 82 
Chairman of Commission on hydro- 
phobia, ii, 173, 174, 175, 
Report, ii, 176 
Death, ii, 202 
Letters to Pasteur, ii, 102, 107 

— on Colin, 98 

— germ of hydrophobia, ii, 176 

— methods of Delafond and 

Pasteur, ii, 53 

— microbes, 143, 145 

— Pasteurjs, treatment of hydro- 

phobia, ii, 201 

— remedies for hydrophobia, ii, 


— virulence of bacteridia, ii, 89 
Sketch of, ii, 40 

Statistics of death from hydro- 
phobia, ii, 206 
"Vaccinates sheep against anthrax, 
ii, 84 
Bourbaki, General : 
Death, i, 193 

Retreat of Army Corps, i, 192 
Bourboulon, Commandant, gives 
Pasteur news of his son, 
i, 193 
Bourgeois, Philibert, i, 3 
Bourrel sends do£js to laboratory, 
ii, 168, 174 

Boussingault, M., ii, 132 

Boutet, veterinary surgeon, ii, 39, 
61, 107 
On splenic fever, ii, 54 
Report of vaccinated sheep, ii, 141 

Boutroux, curator in Pasteur's labor- 
atory, ii, 33 

Boyle, Robert, on fermentation, 
ii, 1 

Brand, Dr., treatment of typhoid, 
ii, 142 

Breithaupt, Professor of Mineralogy, 
i, 65 

Bretonneau, on diphtheria, ii, 231 

Brie cattle sutler from anthrax, ii, 
35, 92 

Brochin, candidate for Academie de 
Medecine, ii, 3 

Brongniart, Alexandre, i, 42 

On Commission on spontaneous 
generation, i, 106 

Brouardel, Professor : 

On antirabic cure, ii, 212, 215 
Speech at Congress of Hygiene, 

ii, 224 
Speech at Pasteur Jubilee, ii, 227 

Broussais, surgery under, ii, 13 

Bruce, Mrs., presents Pasteur with 
Life of Livingstone., ii, 167 

Buda-Pesth, Hygiene and Demo- 
graphy Congress at, ii, 234 

Budberg, M. de, Russian Ambassa- 
dor, i, 127 

Budin and antisepsis, ii, 68 

Buffon, theory of spontaneous genera- 
tion, i, 90 

Buonanni, recipe for producing 
worms, i, 89 

Butyric fermentation, i, 99 

Cagniard-Latour studies yeast, i, 80, 

Cailletet invents apparatus for lique- 
faction of gases, ii, 62 
Cairo, cholera at, ii, 155 
Calmette, Edouard : 
At Lille, ii, 239 
At Pasteur Jubilee, ii, 225 
Attends on Pasteur, ii, 237 
Cambon, Governor - General of 
Algeria, letter to Pasteur, 
ii, 229 
Cardaillac, M. de, i, 163 
Cardinal cultivates silkworms, i, 139 


1 ident, i 

\- inauguration ol I ' i beat In-ti- 

tut.-, ll. _ 

At P .11. 226 

Caro, deputy to Edinburgh, ii, 162 

. < 'omte de, i, 168, 169 
Celsua on hydrophobia, ii, 186, 187 
Ohaffois, i. 192, L93 
Chafllou collaborates with Roux, 

ii, 233 
Chamalieree brewery, i. 207 
Chamberland, M. : 

A.1 Pasteur .Ful.ilee, ii, 223 

Collaborates with P tear, ii, 38, 

47, 49, til. 67, 81, 83, 84, 

86, 89, '.»:». (»7, 99, 137, 198, 


Cross of Legion of Honour, ii, 104 

On Pasteur's early researches, 

ii, 223 
Vaccinations against anthrax, ii, 
Chambery, Pasteur at, i. 13J 
Chaniecin, wood merchant, i, 3 
Chamonix, Pasteur at, i. 97 
Chantemesse, Dr. : 

Attends on Pasteur, ii, 237, 238 
< hi antirabic cure, ii, 212 
Performs inoculations, ii, 210 
Chanzy, General, open letter, i, 190 
Chappuis, Charles, i. .",.". 
Letter to Pasteur, i, 20 
( >n national testimonial t<> Pasteur, 

ii, 24 
Sketch of, i, 18 
Visits Pasteur, ii, 240. 
( lhaptal, discoveries ..f, i, | 

< lharbon. (>'■ e I nihrax) 
Charcot on Past nr'a antirabic cure, 

ii, 216 
Charriere, schoolfellow of !...ui> 

Pasteur, i. 7. 37 
Charrin, Dr., performs inoculations, 

ii. 210 
• lhart i 

Experiment on vaooin linst 

anthrax neai . ii, L06 
Pasteur at, ii, 62, si 
Scientific congress at, ii, 64 
Chassaignae, Dr., on "laboratory 

ii, 6 
Chave.m on • ontagion, ii. 11 1 
Chemists and Phyaioiana, ii, 2, 11 
Ghevreul, M., i. 69 
On si.-. • Paris, . L8€ 

< Ihicken cholera, ii. 7 
Chioaam, let ur, i. 2<xi 

Cholera, i. L26 

I » feta and Cairo, ii. ' 

Chri \i 

cress. .ii. ii. i 8 j 
Christophle, inaagara- 

i of Pasteur Institute, 
ii. 219 
Clermont Perrand, Pasteur at, . 

Clouet invents system of manufac- 
ture' . i. L96 

Coblent L8fl 

Cochin. : ur Jubilee, 

ii. - 

Colin, Professor O., ii. •">:.. 
A.h ice to Biot, ii. \ 
Experiments on anthrax, ii, 
46, 46 

College de France, i, 40 m 

< lomte, Auguste, i. 124, 
Doctrine, ii, 120 

Conseil-Genera] de dej.artement, 
i. 7 

Contagious diseases, problem >f. 
i, 1 •«./'/. 

Conti, Napoleon Ill's se cr et y 
i, 163 

Copenhagen Medical Oongre 
t.'ur at . ii. 17»J 

Coquelin : 
Lets in /' 
i: rites at Trocadi ro fete, ii. I 

Cornil, on acarus of itch, u. 144 

Coulon, schoolfellow <>f Louis Pas- 
teur, i. 7. 

Cribier, .Mine.. i. l * . l 

Cuisance R 7. 181 

Ouvier, ii, l.'.i 

Daguerre, uationa] testimonial to, 

ii. I 
Dalimier, Paul. Pasteur's advice to, 

i, LOO 
1 1 dlos, editor of M 

Damietta, cholera at, ii. 
Darboux, an of I 

at a, i. 31 
Darembei j, !>■ .. on at 

Me. ileal ( ''ress. ii. 1 L0 

Darby aa arienoe master, i, 14 
Darwin : 

i >n earthworms, ii. - 
< >n vi v ii, 1 L6 



Dastre, ML, ii, 57 

Daubree, speech at Pasteur Jubilee, 

ii, 227 
Daunas, sketch of, i, 14 
David, Jeanne, wife of Denis Pas- 
teur, i, 1 
Davaine, Dr. C, ii, 50, 56, 132 
At experiment on earthworms, 

ii, 82 
Experiments on septicaemia, ii, 7, 

On butyric ferment, ii, 6, 36 
Davy, Sir H., i, 195 
Debray, M., ii, 105 
Declat, Dr., on Pasteur's experi- 
ments, i, 1 
Prescribes carbolic solution for 
wounds, ii, 117 
Delafond, Dr. : 

On charbon blood, ii, 36 
Studies anthrax, ii, 53 
Delafosse, Professor of Mineralogy, 

i, 33, 36 
Delaunay acts in Plaideurs, i, 128 
Delesse, Professor of Science at 

Besancon, i, 45 
Delort, General Baron, i, 30 

Native of Arbois, i, 202 
Demarquay, Dr., prescribes carbolic 

solution for wounds, ii, 17 
Denmark, King and Queen of, at 

Medical Congress, ii, 177 
Denonvilliers, surgery under, ii, 13 
Depariements, i, 52 note 
Descartes in Holland, i, 200 
Despeyroux, Professor of Chemistry, 

i, 171 
Dessaignes, chemist, i, 70 
Deville, Henri Sainte Claire, i, 42, 
45, 137, 160 
Admiration for Pasteur's pre- 
cision, ii, 65 
At Compiegne, i, 162 
At Tuileries, i, 154 
Character, i, 146 

Congratulates Pasteur on Testi- 
monial, ii, 24 
Death, ii, 105 
Laboratory, i, 84 
Letter to Mme. Pasteur, i, 174 
On Academie and Science, i, 196 
On Commission of Hygiene, i, 186 
Scientific mission in Germany, 

i, 179 
Studies cholera, i, 126 
Devise, speech at Pasteur Jubilee, 
ii, 227 

Diabetes, i, 135 

Diderot on spontaneous generation, 

i, 90 
Didon, gratitude to Pasteur, i, 144, 

Dieffenbach, M., ii, 113 
Dieulafoy, Professor, attends Pas- 
teur, ii, 237 
Diphtheria, ii, 231 

Statistics of mortality, ii, 234 
Disraeli quoted on public health, 

ii, 224 

Jean Joseph Pasteur settles at, i, 5 
Memorial plate on Pasteur* 

house at, ii, 154 
Presentation to Pasteur from, 
ii, 228 
Douay village, i, 1 
Doucet, Canaille, on Pasteur's 

speech, ii, 123 
Dresden, Pasteur at, i, 65 
Droz, Joseph, his moral doctrine, 

i, 16 
Dubois, Alphee, engraves medal for 

Pasteur, ii, 132 
Dubois, Paul, i, 127 

Bust of Pasteur, ii, 179 
Duboue, Dr., theory on hydropho- 
bia, ii. 171 
Due, Viollet le, i, 127, 128 
Du Camp, Maxime, ii, 124 
Duchartre elected member of 

Academie, i, 100 
Duclaux, M., i, 102, 103, 104, 131, 
138, 169, 170, 204, 205 
Accompanies Pasteur to Milan, 

ii, 28 
Advice to Pasteur, i, 217 
Annals of Pasteur Institute, ii, 212 
At Pasteur Jubilee, ii, 226 
Class of biological chemistry, 

ii, 218 
Congratulates Pasteur on testi- 
monial, ii, 24 
On Bastian, ii, 31 
On heating liquids, ii, 33 
Professor of Chemistry at Cler- 
mont Ferrand, i, 206 
Ducret, Antoine and Charles, shot, 

i, 202 
Ducrot, General, i, 155 
Dujardin-Beaumetz, on antirabic 

cure, ii, 212 
Dumas, Alexandre, i, 106, 107 
Pasteur and, ii, 119 
Visits Pasteur, ii, 238 



Dumas, J. B., ii, 196 

Academic sponsor for Pasteur, 

ii, 122 
Advice to Pasteur, i, 89, 103 
Appreciation of Pasteur, ii, 30 
At, i, 17d 
Death, ii. 162 

[ntereel in Bericiculture, i, 117 
L<t i, L61 no/e ; 

letter on, 16] 
Laboratory, i. 42 
Letter t<> Bouley, ii, 90 
1 ttera to Pasteur, i, 60, 166. L69 
On Aeukiine and Science, i, 196 

— Commiaaon on spontaneous 

generation, i, 106 

— Critical EkecuninaUon, ii, 65 

— Destruction <>f Renault's in- 

struments, i, 191 

— Fermentation, i, 7!», 80 
Presents Pasteur to Napoleon III, 

i, 104 

President of Monetary Com- 
mission, i, 14.") 

Requests Pasteur for article on 
Lavoisier, i, 121, 122 

Senator, i, 174 

Sketch of, ii, 134 

Sorbonne lecturer, i, 21, 25, 40, 
44, 55, 59 

Speech at Peclet's tomb, ii, 106 

Speech to Pasteur, ii, 132 

Statue at Alais to, ii, 2l'4 
Dunnmt, Dr., i, 8 
Dupuy, Charles, speech at Pasteur 

Jubilee, ii, 226 
Duran, Carolus, portrait of Pasteur, 

ii, 217 
Duruy, M., i, 106 

At inauguration of Pasteur In- 
stitute, n. '_'19 

At Tuilenrs, i. 154 

Attitude towards Germany, i, 178 

Letter to Pasteur, i. LS8 

Minister of Public Instruction. 
i, 130 

System of National Education, 
i. L40 

Visits Pasteur, i, LI 


Earthworms, pathogenic action of, 

ii, 82 
Eastern Army Corps, i. v.t-j. 1!).? 
Ecole Normal '■ . i, L0 and ik '• . \<\ 
An ambulance, l, 180, 188 

Xormale (■■ -d) : 

at, i. 143 

Sci- I nnals of, i, 110 

Students enlist, i. 1 -" 
Ecole Polytechnique, i, 43 note, 

Ivlelfeldt, portrait of Pasteur, 

ii, 218 
Eggs, roaearchei on alteration of, 

Ehrenberg, discoveries on infusories, 

i, 214 
Electric telegraph, birth of. i, 76 
Kkinore, OOn g T O W visit, ii, 180 
Emperor of Brazil, interest in Pas- 
teur's experiments, ii, 181 
Empress Eugenie : 
At Bordigliera, ii, 214 
Interview with Pasteur, i, 127, 


Regent, i, 182 
Enfant* Maladu hospital : diph- 
theritic treatment at, ii. 2;i3 
English oommiaaion on inoculation 
for hydrophobia, ii, 208 
Report, ii. 216 
Enlniann. M.. i. 64 
Exhibition reward distribution, 
i, 141 

.//»'.<. i, 31 note 
Falloux, attitude towards liberty of 

teaching, i, 52 
Fauvel, on Pasteur's inductions, 

ii, 147 
Favc, General, i. 133, 147, lo2, 163 
F.Lvre, Jules, Minister of Foreign 
Affairs, i, 182 
Armistice, i. 193 
Interview with Bismarck, i, 184 
"February days," i. 37 
I ilt/. on puerperal fever, ii, 70 
I '« i mentation, teaching OH, i, 80, 
101, -J-'-' : ii, 18 
Aloohoho, i. 85, I'M. 113 ; ii, 64 
Butyric, i. 99, 820 ; ii, 6, 36 
Lad to, i. 83, 816 
of tan, i. L86 

Virus, u. 1 eqq, 
Eiirures Chateau, interview be- 
tur n Biamarek and Favre 

Kikenwher, obtains racemic acid, 
i, 62 



Fleming, Mr., ii, 208 

On Commission on inoculation for 
hydrophobia, ii, 208 

Flesschutt, Dr., i, 131 

Fleys, Dr., proposes toast of Pasteur, 
ii, 151 

Flourens, on spontaneous genera- 
tion, i, 105, 106 

Fontainebleau, Napoleon at, i, 4 

Formate of strontian crystals, i, 50 

Fortoul, Minister of Public Instruc- 
tion, i, 75 

Fouque, M., ii, 105 

Fourcroy, M., ii, 26 
Discoveries of, i, 195 

Foy, General, works of, i, 183 

Franco-German War, i, 177 seqq. 

Franklin on scientific discovery, 
i, 76 

Frederic III, sketch of, ii, 108 

Fre'my, M. : 

On origin of ferments, i, 216, 

Theory of fermentation, ii, 19 

French character, i, 207 


Gaidot, Father, i, 12 
Galliard, M. de, ii, 139 
Galen : 

Discoveries through vivisection, 

ii, 114 
Remedy for hydrophobia, ii, 185 
Galtier, experiments on hydropho- 
bia, ii, 171 
Garde Nationale, i, 37 note 
Gardette, M. de la, ii, 129 
Gautier, Theophile, i, 125 
Gay-Lussac, ii, 134 

Lectures at Jardin des Plantes, 

ii, 197 
Speech before Chamber of Peers, 

ii, 23 
Studies racemic acid, i, 26 
Gayon, researches on alteration of 

eggs, ii, 9 
Geneva Congress of Hygiene, ii, 

Germs, Pasteur's theory of, i, 187 
Gernez, M., i, 104, 161, 166, 169, 
170 ; ii. 105 
Centenary of Ecole Nornude, i, 110 
Collaborates with Pasteur, i, 130, 
138, 156, 204 

Gerome, Knight of Legion of Honour, 

i, 142 
Gille, Dr., attends Pasteur, ii, 237 
Girard on vineyard Labourers and 

Pasteur, ii, 198 
Girardin, St. Marc, i, 82 
Girod, Henry, Royal Notary of 

Salins, i, 1 
Glenard adopts Brand's treatment 

of typhoid, ii, 142 
Godelier, Dr., i, 160 
Goltz, M. de, Prussian Ambassador, 

i, 127 
Gosselin, Dr., ii, 18 
Got acts in Plaideurs, i. 128 
Gounod conducts Ave Maria at Tro- 

cadero fete, ii, 209 
Grancher, Dr. : 

Admiration for Pasteur's experi- 
ments, ii, 195, 202 
Advises Pasteur to winterin South, 

ii, 210 
Attends Pasteur, ii, 237 
On antirabic cure, ii, 212 
Pasteur consults, ii, 193 
Performs inoculations, ii, 210 
Speech at inauguration of Pasteur 
Institute, ii, 219 
Grandeau, M., ii, 105 

Letter to Pasteur, ii, 119 
Graviere, Admiral Jurien de la, 

ii, 211 
Greard, deputy to Edinburgh, ii, 162 
Greece, King and Queen of, at 

Medical Congress, ii, 177 
Grenet, Pasteur'b curator, i, 213 
Gressier, M., Minister of Agricul- 
ture, ii, 53 
Grevy, Jules, supports Tamisier and 

Thurel, ii, 26 
Gridaine, Cunin, Minister of Agri- 
culture, ii, 53 
Gsell, Stephane, on origin of Seriana, 

ii, 30 
Guerin, Alphonse, on cause of puru- 
lent infection, ii, 14 
Guorin, Jules, on vaccine, ii, 86 
Guillaume, Eugene, deputy to Edin- 
burgh, ii, 162 
Guillemin, M., i, 77 

Schoolfellow of Louis Pasteur, i, 7 
Guizot, M. : 
Deputy to Edinburgh, ii, 162 
Quoted on spontaneous generation, 

i, 112 
Welcomes Biot to Academie, L 



Guyon, Professor : 
Accepts Pasteur's advice, ii, 10 

Attfn. ir. ii, 2 : 


Hankcl. Professor of Physios at 

ps ig, i, 64 
Hardy, M., vrelooc P ir to 

\. idemie de Bf< leeine, 

ii, L48 
Har\ ■ »i eries through vi\ 

tioii, ii, 114 
I i utefeuille, M., ii, 105 

Heated wine, experiments on, i, L67 

//• rgan ■■■. i. 216 

Henner, portrait of Pasteur, ii. 217 

Henri IV plants mulberry b 
i, 116, 172 

Hens and anthrax, ii, I . 
Commission on, ii. 68 

Hericourt, I>r., ii. 233 
At Villeneuve l'Etang, ii, 223 

Hervd, Eidouard, ii. 205 

I [eterogenia. Spontaneous 


Hippocrates, allusions to hydropho- 
bia, ii, 185 

Horsley, Victor, secretary to Com- 
mission on inoculation for 
hydrophobia, ii. 209, 216 

Houssaye, Henry, on ovation to Pas- 
nr, ii, 204 

Hugo, Victor, Annie Terrible, i, 191 

Hugueiiin, portrait of Bonaparte, 
i, 181 

Humbert of Italy, Prince, i, 141 

Humboldt, Alexander von, inter- 
.. with .1. B Dumas, 
Husson, M., i, K't', 

Re&eti r-h- - u, 183 

Huxley on Pasteur's di » overii -. 

ii. L62, L63 
Hydrophobia : 
Dogs inoculated against, ii, 173: 

Oommission, ii. 17">. 188 
English Oommission on inocula- 
tion for. u. 208 
Report, ii, 215 
Bxpei imi nta on, ii. 96, 111. 161, 

L68, 188, 200 
Former remedies, ii, I 
Origin of, ii, 187 
Hygiene : 
Central < Jouunission, i. 
International Congress of, ii, 224 

Iceland spar. i. 27 

[ngenhouss, i, 1 

i tut de Fran I I note 

Jacobsen, J. C, f ben? 

Brewery, ii, 1 7 
1 lub-dire I Ecole 

Normal.-, i. .M. 1H. I 
Jaillard, experiments on 

Jamin, M., ii, 132 

On heterogenisl dispute, i. Ill 
Jarry, Claude, royal n >tary. i. 2 
Jenner, national rewards t... ii, L52 
.loinville, Prince de, i. 63 and - 
Joly, Nicolas, professor of phj 

lo_'v. Toulouse, i. 96, l |l 4, 

138, 216 : ii. 33 
Demands Commission oi 

taneouB generation, i, 105, 

Lecture at Faculty of Medicine, 

i. 111 
Jouassain, Mile., acts in / 

i, ' 
Joubert, professor of physics at 

Colli m i: 'Uin, ii 

Jourdan, Gabrieue, wife of Jen 

Hem i Pasteur, i, '-' 
nal de la ' U la 

Chimi- quoted, ii, 88 
Joux, forest of, i, 1 
.lupUle, .1. B., bitten by mad 

ii, L99 ; inoculated, ii, '-i*) 

Kaempfen, director of line arts, I>dlo. 
n. l"'i 
ier, produc trio acid, 

i, 26, 62, 66, I - 

CitasatO, >i antitoxin for 

diphtheria, ii. i 
St in lies plague, n. 236 

Klebs, discovers bacillus of diph- 
theria, ii. 239 

Klein. Dr., pnemmo e wi er rt ti »f noine, 

ii. 14" 



Koch, Dr. : 

At Thuillier's funeral, ii. 1 -~ f» 
Campaign against Pasteur, ii, 135, 

137, 141. 145 
Finds bacillus of tuberculosis, ii, 5 
On bacillus anthracis, ii, 37, 38 
Studies cholera, ii, 157, 160 

Kuhn, Chamalieres brewer, i, 207 

Laborat. 42, 84, 153 

Lachadenedo, M. de, i. 121, 171 

Lactic fermentation, i, 83, 99 

Lagrange, quoted on Lavoisier's 
execution, i, 195 

Lamartine, i, 36 and note 

Lambert, Francoise, wife of 
Claude Etienne Pasteur, 
i, 2 

Lamy, Auguste, i, 161 

Landouzy, on ambulance ward, 
(1870), ii, 13 

Lannelongue, Dr., ii, 67, 169 

Laplace, M., ii, 134 

Lapparent, M. de, Chairman of 
Commission on wine, i, 156, 

Larrey Baron, ii, 87 

On Jupille and Pasteur's dis- 
covery, ii, 201 
Surgery under, ii, 13, 18 

Laubespin, Comte de, ii, 205 

Lauder-Brunton, Dr., on Commis- 
sion on inoculation for 
hydrophobia, ii, 208 

Laurent, Auguste, i, 55 
Sketch of, i, 31, 33 

Laurent, Madame, i, 47 

Laurent, Maria. (See Pasteur, 
Mme. Louis) 

Laurent, M., Rector of Academy 
of Strasburg, i, 47, 156 
Sketch of, i, 47, 54 

Lavoisier, death, i, 195 

Edition of his wurks, i, 122 

Le Bel, studies on stereo-chemistry, 
ii, 223 

Le Dantec, studies on yellow fever 
in Brazil, ii, 239 

Le Fort, Leon : 

On puerperal fever, ii, 68 
Surgery under, ii, 13, 48 

Le Roux, Dissertation sur In Rage, 
ii, 185 

Le Verrier, i, 129 note, 131 

Leblanc, statistics of deaths from 

hydrophobia, ii, 2 
Lechartier, M., i, 104; ii, 105 
Lefebvre, General, i, 4 
Lefort, Mayor of Arbois, i, 202 
Lemaire, Jules, prescribes carbolic 

solution for wounds, ii, 17 
Lemuy, situation of, i, 1 
Leplat, experiments on anthrax, 

ii, 36, :;:» 

Lereboullet, on anthrax, ii, 47 
Lesseps, Ferdinand de, i, 142 

Deputy to Edinburgh, ii, 162 
Leval Division : 

At Arcis-sur-Aube, i, 4 

At Bar-sur-Aube, i, 3 
Lluritier, candidate for Acad^mie 

de Medecine, ii, 3 
Liberty of teaching, law on, i, 52 
Liebig : 

Ideas on fermentation, i, 175, 215, 

Interview with Pasteur, i, 176 

Theory of fermentation, i, 80, 81 ; 
ii, 19 
Lille : 

Pasteur Dean of Faculte at, i, 75 

Pasteur Institute at, ii, 239 
Li>ter, Sir Joseph : 

Appreciation of Pasteur, ii, 30 

At Pasteur Jubilee, ii, 227 

Letter to Pasteur, ii, 16 

Method of surgery, ii, 16, 17 

On Commission on inoculation for 
hydrophobia, ii, 208 

Surgical' method, i, 187, 216 
Littre : 

Medicine and Physicians, ii, 72 

On Microbe, ii, 45 

On primary causes, ii, 22 

Sketch of, ii, 120 
Loefner, isolates bacillus of diph- 
theria, ii, 232 
Loir, Adrieu, i, 54, i~)S ; ii, 138, 140, 

Dean of Lyons Faculty of 
Science, i, 194 

Head of Pasteur Institute, Tunis, 

ii, 239 

London, Pasteur visits, i, 210 
London Medical Congress, Pasteur 

at, ii, 107 
London Society for Protection of 

Animals, complaints on 

vivisection, ii. Ill 
Longet, Dr., Treatise on Phi/si: 

i, 127 

U v 


Lons-le-Saulnier, i, 192; ii, 26 
Louis XI introdnoM mullierry tree 

intu Touraine, i, 116 
Louis XVI, i, 171 

Proposal for balloon ascent, 
ii. 183 
Lucas-Championniere, .lust : 
Edits Journal de la Mid** 

ii, 88 
On dressing of wounds, ii, 16 
Lye- St. Lotus, i. 11. 21. 22 
Lyons. Pasteur at, i, 194 
Lyons Commission on silkworm 
disease, i, 170 


MacDonald, General, i, 4 
Magendie, M. : 

Experiment with rabic blood, 

ii, 170 
Interview with Quaker, ii, 112 
Maillot, M. : 

Accompanies Pasteur to Milan, 

ii, 27 
Collaborates with Pasteur, i, 130, 
13*. lot;, lti'.t 

Mairet, Bousson de, sketch of, i, 8 
Maisonneuvc, Dr., prescribes car- 
bolic .solution for wounds. 

ii, 17 
Malic acid, optical study of, i, 57, 

Mains, Ktienne Louis, discovers 

polarization of light, i, 27 
Marat, conduct to Lavoisier, i, l'J.'i 
Marchoux, attend* on Past our, 

ii, 237 
Marcou, geologist, i, 161 
Marie, Dr., attends on Pasteur, 

ii, 237 
Marie, Grand Duchess of Russia, 

i, III 
Marmier, attends on Pasteur, ii. 237 
Manioz, Jean Joseph Pasteur at, 

i. 6 
Mii t in. M. : 

inds on P tsteur, ii, 237 
Oollaboratea with Rouz, ii. 233 
Lecture c.n diphtheria, ii. 236 
Maternite, mortality at , ii. 68 
Mathilde, Princesse, i. 107 

Salon, i. l 26 
Haueuer, at Bollene, ii, 138 
Maunory, If., ii. 62, Bl 
Ifaury, A., i, 137 

Medici, Catherine de, plant* mul- 
:ii < 'rkannais, 

i. 116 
Medicine, era! condition 1873), 

ii. 4. 11 
M. . Knight of Legion of 

Elonour, i, 142 

M< Ji i-ph, ii. L'l" 

Bitten by mad dog, n. r.-j 
l ii- slated, ii, I 
Melon Agricultural Society, tribute 

to Pasteur, ii, L2€ 
Melun, experiment on vaccin . 

of anthrax near, ii. V2. 94 
M( ricourt, Le Roy de. ii, -i 

y, on anatomists, ii, 4 
Mesnil, M. du, i, 163 

Attends on Pasteur, ii. 
Metchnikoff : 
At Pasteur Jubilee, ii, 226 
Directs private Laboratories, ii, 

Work on " leucocytes," ii, 236 
Meta surrendered, i, 185 
Meudon, proposed laboratory at, 

ii, 176 
Mesieres, mission t<> Edinburgh, 

ii, 162 
Michelet quoted on his friendship 

with Poinsat, i, 18 
Microbe : 

Rossignol on, ii, !*2 
Word invented, ii, 44 
Microscope, results of its invention, 

i. 90 
Mieges, near Nozeroy, registers of 

i, 1 
Milan Con g r e ss of Sericiculturs, 

Pasteur at, ii. 27 
Miller, M. i. tit] 
Milne Edwards : 
\- Tuileries, i. L64 
on Commission on spontaneous 
generation, i. 106 
Mina, Bspos y. sketch of, i, 3 

bernch, chemist and crystal- 
lographer, i, 26 

In Paris, i. til 

Theory of fermentation, ii, 19 
Moigno, Lbbe, on 

generation, i, 1 12 
Molecular dissymini 72, 88, 

199 ; ii, 2 
Monge, method of founding cannon, 

L L96 : ii. 26 
Monod, Henri, quotes Disraeli on 

public health, ii, 224 



Montaigne quoted on Friendship, 

i, 18 
Montalembert, attitude towards 

liberty of teaching, i, 52 
Montanvert, i, 97, 105 
Montpellier, Pasteur at, ii, 131 
Montrond, Pasteur at, i, 192 
Moquin-Tandon, on Pasteur's can- 
didature for Academie, 
i, 100 
Morax, attends on Pasteur, ii, 237 
Moreau, Armand, ii, 56, 57 
Moritz, on chicken cholera, ii, 75 
Morveau, Guyton de, i, 195 ; ii, 26 
Mount Poupet, Pasteur climbs, i, 97 
Mouthe Priory, i, 1 
Mucors, Raulin's experiments on, 

i, 204 
Mulberry tree, i, 116 
Musset, Charles, i, 120, 216 ; ii, 33 
Demands Commission on spon- 
taneous generation, i, 105 
Neic Experimental Researches on 
Heterogenia, i, 94 
Mussy, Dr. Henry Gueneau de : 
Congratulates Pasteur, ii, 115 
Deputy to Edinburgh, ii, 162 
Paper on contagium germ, ii, 41 
Mussy, Dr. Noel Gueneau de, 

i, 160 
Mycoderma, i, 101, 128 
Mycoderma aceti, i, 148, 215 ; ii, 8 
Mycoderma vini, i, 218, 219 ; ii, 8 


Napoleon I : 

At Fontainebleau, i, 4 
Respect for Science, i, 195 
Restores silk industry, i, 116 
Napoleon III : 

Distributes exhibition rewards, 

i, 141 
Grants laboratory to Pasteur, i, 147 
Interest in sericiculture, i, 128, 

133, 174 
Interview with Pasteur, i, 104 
Invites Pasteur to Compiegne, i, 127 
Leaves Sedan and Paris, i, 181 
Letter on Pasteur's laboratory, 

i, 162 
Summons scientists to Tuileries, 
i, 154 
Napoleon, Prince, interviews with 

Pasteur, ii, 214 
National Testimonials, ii, 23 

Naumann, Dr. Maurice, i, 197 

Professor of mineralogy, ii, 64 
Needham, partisan of spontaneous 

generation, i, 90 
Nelaton, on surgery (1870), ii, 14 
Ney, General, i, 4 

Nicolle, Dr., laboratory of bacteri- 
ology at Constantinople, 
ii, 239 
Niepce, national testimonial to, ii, 23 
Nimes, Pasteur at, ii, 130, 132 
Nisard, Professor : 

Academic sponsor for Pasteur, 

ii, 122 
Director of Ecole Normale, i, 84, 

Letters to Pasteur, i, 119 ; ii, 81 
Sketch of, ii, 123 
Nocard, M., ii, 85 

Goes to Alexandria, ii, 157 
On hydrophobia, ii, 181, 187 


Oersted and modern telegraph, i, 76 
" Ordonnances," 8 and note. 
Orleans, Pasteur lectures on vinegar 

at, i, 148 
Oudinot, General, i, 4 
Ovariotomy, fatal results of, ii, 13 

Pages, Dr., Mayor of Alais, i, 121, 

Paget, Sir James : 

At Copenhagen Medical Congress, 

ii, 177 
President of Commission on ino- 
culation for hydrophobia, 
ii, 208 
Speech at Medical Congress, ii, 108 
Paillerols, near Digne, i, 169 
Panum, President of Copenhagen 

Medical Congress, ii, 177 
Parandier, M., i, 43 
Paratartaric (racemic) acid, i, 26, 38, 
41, 62 
Pasteur in search of, i, 63 seqq. 
Pareau, Mayor of Arbois, i, 13 
Parieu, M. de, Minister of Public 

Instruction, i, 54 
Paris : 

Bombarded, i, 188 
Capitulation, i, 193 
Prepares for siege, i, 183 



Parmentior on potato, i. 171 
Pasteur, CamiQe, i. U9, 121, 123 

our, Cecile, i, !■ 
Pasteur, Claude, i, 1 

Manias utract, i. 1 

i . bear, ( Qaude ESI ienne, i, 2 

Enfranchised, i, 2 
Pasteur, Denis, marries Jeanne 
Uivid, i, 1 
ur Hospital, project for, ii, 242 
Pasteur Institute : 

ah of, ii. 212, 213, 238 
.untied, ii, 206 
Inauguration, ii. 218 
Scholarships, ii, 230 
Trocadero fete for, ii. ^^ 
Pasteur, Jean Henri, at Besancon, 

i, 2 
Pasteur, Jean Joseph, ii, 28 
Character, i, 7, 22, 58 
Conscript, i, 3 
Death, i, 118 
In Paris, i, 12, 57 
Marriage, i, 5 
Sergeant-major, i, 4 
Studies, i, 31 
Pasteur, Jeanne, death of, i, 86, 118 
Pasteur, Josephine, i, 18, 30, 50 
Pasteur, Louis : 

Administration of Ecole Normale, 

i, 84, 109, 112 
Advice to Paul Dalimier, i, 109 
Advice to Raulin, i, 203 
Article on Claude Bernard's works, 
i. l.'.l 

— indifferenoe of public authori- 

t us, i, 151 

— Lavoisier, i, 122, 124 

At Arbois, i, 7. L80; ii, 128, 216 

— Besanoon Royal College, 14 


— Bordeaux, ii. 1 17 

— Compiegne, i, 1-7 

— Copenhagen Medical Congress, 

ii, L7fl 
Bpooeh, ii. 177 

— t leneva Con [Teas of Hygi< tie, 

ii, L36 

— London Medical Con^i 

n. 135 
Lecture, ii, L09, 1 16 

— Milan Oongn of Serideul« 

tare, ii. 28 
Speech, ii, 29 

— Villa Vicciitina. i, 173 

— Villuneuve l'Etang, ii, 240 
Birth, i, 6 

ur, Louis (continued) : 
adidate for Ac i Lemyof Sciences, 

i, 81. KM» 

Candidature for Hnnafn. ii, 28 

Charaoteristios, i. 9, 10, 12, 16 

23, 26,32,60, L61 ; ii, 1 24, 
30, 7::, 103, 240 

Chemistry and Phjaioi theses, 
1, 34 

Consulted on inoculation for peri- 
pneumonia, ii, 128 

Criticism of Bernard's posthumous 
notes, 11. 66 

Curator in Balard's laboratory, 
i, 32 

Crystallographic research- 
lib, 57, 60; 11. 
Lecture on, i, i"L' 

Dean of Lille FacultA, 1. 76 ; ii, 27 

Death, ii, 242 

Delegation to, ii, l 

Deputy to Edinburgh, ii, 162 
Speech, ii, 1 « "» 1 

Discovers constitution of para- 
tartaric acid, i, 39 

Discussion with Bastian, ii, 31 

Dispute with Rammekberg, i. LOS 

Experiments on atmospheric air. 

Friendship for Charles Chap: 

i. is. 20, 22 
Grand Cross of Legion of Honour, 

ii. 104 
His masters, i, 145 ; ii, 30 
His name given to district in 

Canada and t.i village in 

•na. ii. 229 

His teaching, i, 77. 79 
Illness, ii, 211, 217, 224, 236, 
Watchers, ii, 237, 240 

In hospitals, ii. t>7. 69 

— London, i, 210 

— Paris, 1. 11. 20, 67 

— Strasburg, i, 46, 177 
Influence of his labours, ii. 

hi_>l I I •■lop- 

ni 0/ ) ■ iff, 1. 221 

Interview with Biot, i, 41 

— ] , i, 176 

— Mitscherlich and Rosa, i. 61 

— Napoleon 111. i, 104, I 
Jubilee celebration, ii. 

Speech, ii, 228 
Kni'.lit of Legion of Honour, i, 70 
Lai wi i. l.'>7. 162, 

194 ; ii. Id. 223 
ireat of Exhibition, i, 140 



Pasteur, Louis (continued) : 
Lecture on germ theory, ii, 49 
Lectures on vinegar at Orleans, 

i, 148 
Letters, i, 23, 24, 28 

On experiment at Pouilly le 

Fort, ii, 100, 101 
To Bellotti, i, 207 

— Chappuis on Lille Faculty, i, 77 

— Dumas, i, 141, 166 ; ii, 28 

— Duruy, i, 131 

— Emperor of Brazil, ii, 182 

— Jupille, ii, 205 

— Laurent, i, 48 

— Napoleon III, i, 146 

— Raulin, i, 199 

— Sainte-Beuve, i, 126 
M.D. of Bonn, i, 154 

Returns diploma, i, 189, 190, 

Marks of gratitude from agri- 
culturists, ii, 150 

Marriage, i, 51 

Medal from Society of French 
Agricultors, ii, 90 

Member of Academie de Mede- 
cine, ii, 3 
Speech, ii, 19, 20, 21 

— Academie des Sciences, i, 103 ; 

ii, 50 

— Academie Franchise, ii, 119, 

Memorial plate on house at Dole, 

ii, 154 
National testimonial, ii, 23 
Obtains racemic acid, i, 69 
Offered professorship at Pisa, 

i, 200 
On chicken cholera, ii, 77, 86 

— Littre and Positivism, ii, 120 

— Science and religion, ii, 22 

— Scientific supremacy of France, 

i, 195 

— Vaccine, ii, 87, 89 

of anthrax, ii, 89, 90 

— Experiment, ii, 92, 95, 96, 98, 

101, 145 
Results, ii, 103 
Paper on Plague, ii, 79 
Paralytic stroke, i, 160; ii, 217 
Pastel drawings, i, 12, 20 
Pension augmented, ii, 152 
Permanent Secretary of Academie 

des Sciences, ii, 217 
Portraits, ii, 217 
Professor of Chemistry, Strasburg, \ 

i, 45 

Pasteur, Louis (continued) : 

Professor of Physics at Dijon, 42 

Proposed studies, i, 198 

Refuses German decoration, 

ii, 239 
Reply to Dumas, ii, 133 
" Jiesearches on Dimorphism," 

i, 36 
Researches on spontaneous 

generation, i, 87 seqq., 216, 

222 ; ii, 55 
Lecture at Sorbonne on, i, 106 
Speech on, ii, 20 
Researches on stereo-chemistry, 

ii, 223 
Science's Budget, i, 153 
Scientific Annals of Ecole Normale, 

i, 110 
Searches for his son, i, 192 
Solicitude for patients, ii, 194, 

203, 205 
Speech at Aubenas, ii, 129 
Speech at inauguration of Insti- 
tute, ii, 220 
Speech on Deville, ii, 105 
Speech on Joseph Bertrand, 

ii, 197 ? 204 
Studies beer, i, 207 seqq., 219; 

ii, 7, 10, 60, 63 
Book on, i, 214, 219 ; ii, 117 

— Cholera, 126 

— Contagious diseases, ii, 2 seqq. 

— Fermentations, i, 79, 83, 85, 

99, 113 ; ii, 2, 18 

— Hydrophobia, ii, 96, 141, 161, 

168 seqq. 
Inoculates dogs, ii, 173, 188 
Inoculates Joseph Meister, 

ii, 194 
Inoculates Jupille, ii, 200 

— Silkworm Disease, i, 117, 120, 

129, 139, 155, 168 

— on Wine, i, 113, 15S ; ii, 61 
Book on, i, 133 

— Rouget of pigs, ii, 138 
Report on, ii, 140 

— Splenic fever, ii, 35, 37, 53, 62 
Travels in search of racemic acid, 

62 seifq. 
Trephines dog, ii, 96 
Turin veterinary school and, ii, 45, 

Vintage tour, i, 104 
Visitors, ii, 198 
Visits Duclaux, 206 
Pasteur, Madame Louis, i, 49, 52, 

59,103,160, 172; ii, 210, 237 



p but, Madame Lonia (continued): 
< foes to Alais, 1. L30 
Letters to daughter, ii, 9*;. l |,, >, 
LOS, 174 
Paul, St. Vincent de, life <>f, 

ii. 241 
Payen, papei «>n beer, i, 208 
Pectim-t, discoveries through vivi- 

u>n, ii, 1 M 
Peers of France, i, SO note 
Pelletier, Louise, bitten by mad 

ii. 203 
Pellico, Bih to, M* i pi igioni, i, 18 
Pelouze, M., ii, US 
1\ iMcfllttwn gknicum, i, 204 ; . 
Perdrix, at Pasteur Jubilee, ii, 226 
Perraud, J. J., bust at Monay to, 

ii, L99 
Perroyvo, Henri, on Poland, i, 184 
Perronoito, on microbe of chicken 

cholera, ii. 7;") 
Perrot, deputy to Edinburgh, ii, 162 
PersOB, Professor of Chemistry, 

Btrasburg, i, 45 
Peter M. : 

Dispute with Pasteur, ii, 142, 144. 

147, 148 
( )n ant inilnc CUTO, ii, 212 
Philomathic Society, Pasteur mem- 
ber of, i, 102 
Phthisis, t hemy of, ii, 5 
Phylloxera, ii, 7:'. 

Physicians, attitude towards chem- 
ists, ii, 2, 11 
Picanl, General, candidatare for 

Senate, ii. 27 
Pidoux and Trousseau, TraUi de 

TherajH utique, ii, 2 
Pidouz, Dr. : 

i ) n disease, ii, 5 
• On tuberculosis, ii, 5 
Pierrefonds Castle restored, i, 127 
1 rron, on Laurent at Biom, i, 47 
Pinny, l'r. : 
On disease and patient, ii, 42 
On tuberculosis, Li, 6 
Piaa Pasteur offered professorship 

at. .. 200 
Pitt, on vote to Jenner, ii, L62, I 
Plague bacxllus diaoovered, ii, 235 
Plague, Pasteur's paper on, ii, 79 

n acted at Compiegne, i, L28 
Plenisette village, i, L. 
Pliny the Elder, remedy for hydro- 
phobia, ii. 186 
Poggiale, speech "ii Bpontai 
generation, ii, 20 

Pointurier, M.. i, 12 

fixation of 1 
Poligi . Cardinal of, Anti-Lrcre- 
tin i, i. 

l ' sny, i. i 

of, i. B 
Polytechnioian, i. i 
i n-lier, retreat to, i, 192 
I ' itivist doctrine, ii, L20 
Potal . prejudice against, i. 171 
Pottcvin, attends <>n P 
Pouchet, M., i. 98, 104, 138, Bit 

v . Vegetable " ' »ictf 

/■ i. 92 

Th? I i. 214 

Theory '>f fermentation, ii, 19 
Pouillet, Professor of Physics at 

Soil, mine. i. 27, 
Pouilly le Fort, experiment • 

cinati'»n 01 anthrax, ii. 
96, 97, 101 
Results, ii. L02 
Prague, Pasteur at. i, 66 
Pre"v6t, at Villeneuve l'Eta 

ii, 240 
Primary teaching, law on i av 

tion, i. 1 10 
Prince Imperial, Villa Yiccntina, 
i. 178 
• •'. B •. i. 191 n 
/' g Montyon, i, 16 n 
Provost, acts in i' 
Provoetaye, de la, work itel- 

lography, i, 
Prussia, Crown l'ruu-.- of, i, 141 

Puerperal U ver, ii, I 

sax, Pi feasor of a 

nee at 

I 1 .. - in on, i. 45 
Putrefaction, i, l"l 


Quain, Dr., on Commission on 
inoculation for hydro- 
phobia, ii, 208 

Quatrefa on history of 

silkworm, i. 1 16 

Queyrat, attends >>n Pasteur, ii. 


Rabies and hydrophobia, ii. 187 
Rabies, Commission. 



Rabourdin, M., ii, 62 
Racemic. (See Paratartaric acid) 
Raibaud-Lnnge, M., i, 169 
Rammelsberg, dispute with Pasteur, 

i, 102 
Randon, General, i, 166 
Raspail, F. V., researches on origin 

of itch, ii, 152 
Rassmann, Dr., obtains racemic acid, 

i, 67 
Raulin, Jules, i, 93, 130, 161, 166, 

173, 209 
Accompanies Pasteur to Milan, 

ii, 28 
Sketch of, i, 204 
Raulin's liquid, i, 205 
Ravaisson, F., i, 137 
Rayer, on charbon blood, ii, 36 
Raynaud, Dr. Maurice, ii, 67 

On hydrophobia, ii, 169 
Reaudin, Auguste, on Lister's 

methods, ii, 17 
Reclus, Dr., on purulent infection, 

ii, 15 
Reculfoz village, i, 1 
Redi, Francesco, experiment on 

spontaneous generation, 

i, 89 
Redtenbachor, M., i, 66 
" Regiment Dauphin," i, 4 
Regnault, Henri, i, 50, 59 

Death, i, 191 
Regnier acts in Plaideurs, i, 128 
Renan, E., i, 137 

On state of France, i, 199 
Quoted from Revue Germanique, 

i, 110 
Sketch of, ii, 126 
Speech to Pasteur on hydrophobia, 

ii, 168 
Welcomes Pasteur to Academie 

Francaise, ii, 124 
Renaud, M., i, 7 
Renault, experiments with rabic 

blood, ii, 170 
Rencluse, i, 105 

Rcnon, attends on Pasteur, ii, 237 
Rep^caud, Headmaster of Royal 

College, Bcsancon, i, 14 
Rhenish provinces, i, 189 
Richet, Dr., ii, 233 
Rigault, lectures at College de France, 

i, 82 
Robin, Charles, sketch of, i, 124 
Rochard, Dr., on plague, ii, 81 
Rochette, Baron de la, sketch of, 

ii, 92 

Rochleder, professor of chemistry, 

i, 67 
Roger, on Pasteur's services, ii, 23 
Rollin College, experiments in labor- 
atory at, ii, 189, 193, 210 
Romanet, Headmaster of Arbois Col- 
lege, i, 9, 13, 30, 36 
Romieu, sketch of, i, 53 
"Rouget" of pigs (swine fever), ii, 

138, 140 
Roqui, Jean Claude, i, 6 
Roqui, Jeanne Etiennette, wife of 
Jean Joseph Pasteur, i, 6, 7 
Death, i, 40 
Roscoe, Sir Henry, on Commission 
on inoculation for hydro- 
phobia, ii, 208 
Rose, G., crystallographer, in Paris, 

i, 61 
Rossignol, M. : 

Article in Veterinary Press on 

microbe, ii, 91 
Vaccination of sheep against an- 
thrax and, ii, 93, 99, 101 
Rotz, Pasteur medal, ii, 225 
Rouher, at Tuileries, i, 154 
Roux, Dr. : 

Account of Thuillier's death, ii, 159 
At Pasteur Jubilee, ii, 226 
Attends Pasteur, ii, 237 
Collaborates with Pasteur, ii, 67, 
69, 81, 83, 86, 95, 96, 99, 
116, 137, 150, 171, 198, 202 
Cross of Legion of Honour, ii, 104 
Goes to Alexandria, ii, 157 
Inoculates horse with diphtheritic 

toxin, ii, 233 
Lectures on diphtheria, ii, 234 
Lectures on technical microbia, 

ii, 218 
Lecture to London Royal Society, 

ii, 232 
On Pasteur's medical work, ii, 61 
Performs inoculations, ii, 210 
Sketch of, ii, 11 
Studies diphtheria, ii, 231 
Roziers, Pilatre de, balloon ascent, 

ii, 183 
Russian mujiks bitten by wolf, 
ii, 207 


Saccharimeter, i, 28 
Sadowa, battle of, i, 178 
Sainte-Beuve : 

Letters to Pasteur, i, 125 

I I 



Sainte-Beuve (continual) : 
On Biot's character, i, 66 
Opinion of Joseph Pros, i, 14 
Pasteur attends his lectures, i, 123 
Philosophy, i, 123 
Speech at Senate, i, 143 
St. Dizier, i, 4 

IippolytolaFort, i, 165, 174, 
St. Victor, PhuI de, on Germany, 

i, 188 
Saliiubeni, treatise on sericiculture, 

i, 159 
Salins, i, 27 

Claude Ktieune Pasteur .settles at, 
i, 2 
Sand, George, i, 107 
Sandeau, Jules, i, 127 
Sanderson, Professor Burdon, on 
Commission on inoculation 
for hydrophobia, iL, 209 
Sarcey, Francisque, i, V>! 
Saussure, Theodore de, i, 100 
Sauton, Speech at Pasteur Jubilee, 

ii, 227 
Say, L^on, Pasteur's reply to, ii, 195 
Scheele discovers tartaric acid, i, 26 
Schrotter, Professor, i, 66 
Schwann, Dr., observations on fer- 
mentations, i, 80 
Science and Religion, ii, 22 

.itists meet at Tuileries, i, 15-1 
Sedan, i, 181 
Sedillot, Dr. : 
Oorrespondenoe of Institute, i, 186 
Sketch of, ii, 44 
Senarmont, M. de, i, 50, 58, 59, 
Advice to Pasteur, i, 69 
Confidence In Pasteur, i, 89 
Sepl ., ii, 7, 12,41, 86, 146 

Seriana vil! . ria, ii, 

Soricicultun , L, 115 
Serotherapy. (See Diphtheria) 
res, Olivier de, i, 172 
toe to, ii, 128, 130 

■ -ulturo, i, I 
Treadie on (fathering of Sill:, i, 116, 

. bel, M., i, 66 
ol, experiments, ii, 40 
Silkworm disease, i, 1 1*1 MOB,., 139, 
155, 166, 168 
Lyons Commission on, i, 170 

on, Jules, i, l M ; it, i 
At inauguration of fosteU Insti- 
tute, ii, 219 
On Booh) Normale, i, 23 

Sorbonne, i, 21 note, I I 

Inauguration of new, ii, 224 

-teur Jubilee cc 'i,ii, 226 

Spallanzani, Abbe, experiments on 

anirnalculit', i, 91 
Splenic fever (charbon). (See An- 
Spontaneous ee&StmniOB, i, 87 teqq., 
216, 222; ii, 5. 10,60 
Commiasion on, i, 106, 111 
Pasteur's lecture si 3 n, 

i, 106 
Stoffel, Colonel Baron, i, 155 
Strssburg, Pasteur at, i, 46, 71, i, 179, 185 
Strasburg University, i, 189 
Straus, M. : 

Qoes to Alexandria, ii, 157 
On OholetS Commission, ii, 160 
Sully, opposes silk industry, i, 116 
Sully-Prudhomme, love of Frauoe, 

i, I 
Supt village, i, 2 

Surgery before Pasteur, ii, 12 seqq. 
Susiini, S., ii, 28 
Swine Fever. (See Rouget of j 

Talmy, Dr., at Bordeaux, ii, 117 
Tami Senate, 

ii, 27 
Tantonvii! ■ brewery, i, 213 
oier, l>r., ii. 
( »n pu ver, ii, 67 

.ml, constitution of, i, 26,38 
Teaching : 

Lsw on liberty of, i. 
on prii 
Terrillon, Dr., ii, 210 
Thenard, Baron, ii, 134 

Sketch of, i, 45 
Thierry, M., at Pouilly le Fort 

experiment, ii, 24, 
Thiers, M. : 

tier to Pssteur, i. 144 
On bravery of 3rd Regiment, i, 3 
Third Regiment of Line, i, '.i 

•• R giuient Dauphin, 1 
Thorwaldsen Museum, Copenhagen, 

ii, 180 
Thuillier, Louis, ii, 05' tth Pasteur, ii, 135, 

137, 138, 140 
Death, iL 158 



Thuillier, Louis {continued) : 
Goes to Alexandria, ii, 157 
StudieR hydrophobia, ii, 169 
Thurel, candidature for Senate, ii, 27 
Tisserand, M., ii, 132 

Director of Crown Agricultural 

establishments, i, 173 
On Commission on hydrophobia, 
ii, 173 
Toscanelli, S., i, 200, 201 
Toul, on second line of fortifications, 

i, 179 

Tourtel brewery at Tantonville, i, 213 

Toussaint, professor at Toulouse 

Veterinary School, ii, 42, 62 

Studies microbe of chicken cholera, 

ii, 75 
Vaccinates sheep against anthrax, 
ii, 84, 85 
Traube, Dr., on ammoniacal fermen- 
tation, ii, 10 
Trecul, Dr., ii, 8 

On heterogenesis, i, 216, 218 
Theory of fermentation, ii, 19 
Trelat, Dr., surgeon at Maternite, 
ii, 68 
On Commission of Hygiene, i, 186 
Trocadero fete for Pasteur Institute, 

ii, 209 
Troost, M., ii, 105 
Trousseau and Pidoux, Traite de 

Therapcutique, ii, 2 
Trousseau, Dr. : 

Lecture on ferments quoted, ii, 7 
On diphtheria, ii, 231 
On puerperal fever, ii, 68 
Tsar sends Cross of St. Anne of 

Russia to Pasteur, ii, 208 
Tuberculosis, researches on, ii, 5 
Tuileries, scientists meet at, i, 154 
Tunis, Pasteur Institute at, ii, 239 
Turin Veterinary School and Pas- 
teur, ii, 146, 149 
Tyndall, Professor : 

Dust and Diseases, ii, 17 
Letter to Pasteur, ii, 131 
Typhoid fever, medical methods of 
treating, ii, 142 


Udressier, Claude Francois, Count 

of, i, 1 
Udressier, Philippe-Marie-Francois, 

Count of, i, 2 
Universite, i, 44 note, 155 

University of Edinburgh, Tercen- 
tenary, ii, 162 
Degrees, ii, 163 

Vaccination, ii, 78, 87, 89 
Against anthrax, ii, 90 

Experiment, ii, 92, 95, 96, 98, 

106, 145 
Results, ii, 103 
Against swine fever, ii, 160, Field-Marshal, i, 142, 168 
At Tuileries, i, 154 
Silkworm nursery, i, 173 
Vallisneri, medical professor of 

Padua, i, 90 
Van Helmont, recipe for producing 

mice, i, 89 
Van t'Holf, studies on stereo- 
chemistry, ii, 223 
Van Tieghem, i, 217 ; ii, 10 
VaUquelin, tanning process, i, 29 
Veillon, attends on Pasteur, ii, 237 
Velpeau : 

On diphtheria, ii, 231 
On pin-prick, ii, 12 
Venasque Pass, i, 105 
Vercel, Jules i, 7, 36, 97, 192 ; ii, 44 
Accompanies Pasteur to Paris, 
i, 10 
Verneuil, M. : 

On antirabic cure, ii, 212 
On suigery (1870), ii, 14 
Vescovato, i, 169 
Veuillot, Louis, i, 36 

On liberty of teaching, i, 53 
Viala, Eugene : 

Attends on Pasteur, ii, 237 
Preparations for inoculations, 

ii, 202 
Sketch of, ii, 180 
Vialla, M., Vice-President of Agri- 
cultural Society, Mont- 
pellier, ii, 131 
Vicat, national testimonial to, ii, 23 
Villa Vicentina, Illyria, i, 173 
Vdlemin, Dr. : 

Advises Pasteur to winter in 

south, ii, 211, 212 
At experiment on earthworms, 

On Commission on hydrophobia, 

ii, 173 
On contagion of tuberculosis, 

ii, 145 
Researches on tuberculosis, ii, 4, 5 



Villeneuve l'Etang, branch establish- 
nuiit of laboratory at, 
ii, 17<i, 184, 188 
Stables, 2 J 1 
Villers-Farlay, Mayor of, writes to 

bear, ii, LOT 
Vinegar, Pasteur lectures on manu- 
facture of, i, 148 
Virchow, Professor : 
At Copenhagen Medical Congress, 

ii, 177 
At Edinburgh, ii, 164 
On anti-vivisection, ii, 110 
Virulent Diseases — Chicken Cholera, 

ii, 76 
Virus ferments, ii, 1 seqq. 
Vivisect ion : 

Discoveries made through, ii, 116 
Virchow on, ii, 110 
Volta, S., i, 195 
Voltaire : 

Philosophic Dictionary quoted on 

God, i, 92 
Singularities of Nature, i, 92 
Vone, Theodore, consults Pasteur, 

ii, LOT 
Vulpian, ii, 66 

Champions Pasteur, ii, 213, 214 

Death, ii, L'lt; 

On Brand's treatment of typhoid, 

ii, 143 
On Commission on hydrophobia, 

ii, 173 
Pasteur consults, ii, 193 
Speech on Pasteur's experiments 
OB hydrophobia, ii, 200, 


Wales, Princf of, i, 141 
Wallace, Sir Richard, founds dogs' 
cemetery at Baga 

Wasserzi. one, interprets for 

Pasteur, ii, ! 
Weber, Dr., advises Mme. M 

to consult Pasteur, ii, LOT 
William, King of Prussia, meets 

kpoleon, i. 182 
Wine, studies on, i, 113, 158 
Wissemburg, i, 178 
Wolf-bites, statistics of death from, 

ii, S 
Wurtz : 

Laboratory, i, 42 

Ou Commission of Hygiene, i, 186 

Yeast, i, 80 

Pasteur's paper on, i, 2J1 ; ii, 8 

(See also Fern, n) 

Yellow fever, Pasteur studies, 
ii, 116 
n, Dr. : 
Studies diphtheria, ii, 231 
Studies plague in China, ii, 236, 
Younger, welcomes Pasteur to 
Edinburgh, i, 38 

Zevort, M., i, 47, L90 
Zimmern, sous-j>r<Jccture, i, 189 

klCHAKD ( . 1 n>., BrUKSWH ^«-K. 

> v- • \l 

Ml / 


v. 2 

Vallerv-Radot, Rene 
The life of Pasteur